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A photo of a Slender-billed Vulture (Gyps tenuirostris)
Slender-billed Vulture

Slender-billed Vulture

Gyps tenuirostris

The slender-billed vulture (Gyps tenuirostris) is an Old World vulture species native to sub-Himalayan regions and Southeast Asia. It is Critically Endangered since 2002 as the population on the Indian subcontinent has declined rapidly. As of 2021, fewer than 870 mature individuals are thought to remain.

It used to be the Indian vulture, under the name of “long-billed vulture”. However, these two species have non-overlapping distribution ranges and can be immediately told apart by trained observers, even at considerable distances. The Indian vulture is found only to the south of the Ganges and breeds on cliffs while the slender-billed vulture is found along and nests in trees.

At 80 to 95 cm, in length, this mid-sized vulture is about the same size as its sister species, the Indian vulture. This vulture is mostly grey with a pale rump and grey undertail coverts. The thighs have whitish down. The neck is long, bare, skinny and black. The black head is angular and narrow with the dark bill appearing narrow midway. The ear opening is prominent and exposed.

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Slender-billed Vultures on Birda

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Hemant Kirola
03 Dec 2023 - 1:34pm
India

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