Answer of Riddle 0.3

Indian vulture (Gyps indicus) Photograph by Shantanu Kuveskar (Wikepedia)

Vultures are obligatory scavengers that feed only on dead meat. There is no other species in the animal world that have evolved for scavenging like vultures have. Any animal can eat only 5% of its body weight in one sitting but vultures can eat almost as much as their body weight in a single sitting which serves as their food for days. This is because food is never assured for scavengers. Vultures are also social birds. They cannot live alone. They can only live with a flock. This makes it easy for them to look for food. Vultures are also highly mobile. They can fly very fast. They start to fly and go up to the thermals i.e. the zone of warm air high above the earth’s surface. Once they are on the thermals they can fly very fast and can go upto 100 km/hr, travelling large distances within minutes. While they fly on the thermals they keep looking at each other as well as keep looking down for food. Because it is difficult to clearly see from such a height, the vultures also keep looking for other scavengers to identify probable food location from the other scavengers’s movements. Once they see any other scavengers circling around at a single spot, one of the vulture comes down a bit and investigates. If it confirms the availability of a carcass, it does not come down immediately but rather starts taking circles in the opposite direction, thereby indicating the other vultures about the presence of food.

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