• East view from Crissy Field overlook with old Coast Guard station on left and city on right

    Presidio of San Francisco


Turkey Vulture

(Cathartes aura)
Turkey Vulture
A Turkey Vulture above Inspiration Point.
Will Elder, NPS

Natural History: The Turkey Vulture eats carrion of all sizes. It finds dead animals by both sight and scent. This communal roosting bird is not known to breed in the Presidio.

General Distribution: This bird is found throughout the Presidio, often soaring above the forest or more open lands.

Frequency: This species is moderately common throughout the year in the Presidio.

Identifying Characteristics: This very large bird, when seen from below, has dark, two-tone wings with silver-gray flight feathers and black leading edges. The head is bald and red, and the beak is white. Its nature is to soar with seldom a flap of the wings.

Presidio Birds main page

Did You Know?

Albert Sidney Johnston

Colonel Albert Sidney Johnston, commander of the Pacific branch of the army, prepared the defenses of the San Francisco Bay and ordered the first garrison of Fort Point. Kentucky-born Johnston then resigned his commission to join the Confederate Army; he was killed at the battle of Shiloh in 1862.