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Cinereous/Black and Griffon Vultures - Extremadura, Spain

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Old Monday 17th April 2017, 01:06   #1
eliotc
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Cinereous/Black and Griffon Vultures - Extremadura, Spain

Watching more than a dozen Griffon Vultures at at Parque Nacional de Monfragüe (Serradilla, Estremadura, Spain) on 30 May, this one leapt out at me as significantly darker than the Griffons, seen from the same angle in the same light. Of course, illusions are possible, but:

Do any features rule out Cinereous Vulture? Thank you!
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Old Monday 17th April 2017, 06:41   #2
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No, that's what is it.

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Old Monday 17th April 2017, 09:53   #3
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Yep, a Eurasian Black Vulture

'Cinereous' means ash-coloured (pale greyish-white), so that definitely doesn't fit
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Old Monday 17th April 2017, 12:45   #4
John Cantelo
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I dislike the current fashion for calling this species "Cinereous Vulture" since "Black Vulture" is how it was widely known as for decades and is descriptively much better. I've less animus about the alternative "Monk Vulture" but Black Vulture is still better. I gather the name change came about to avoid confusion with American Black 'Vulture' which, presumably, has the earliest claim to the epithet 'black'. However, since we in Europe have a far older claim the term 'vulture', I think it's the generic name for the American version that needs changing. After all the American bird isn't a vulture at all but a member of the stork family. Members of Carthartidae should all be called either turkey-vultures for the small ones or condors for the two big fellows.
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 16:52   #5
eliotc
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Originally Posted by John Cantelo View Post
However, since we in Europe have a far older claim the term 'vulture', I think it's the generic name for the American version that needs changing. After all the American bird isn't a vulture at all but a member of the stork family.
You will be disappointed to learn, then, that in keeping with recent nomenclature trends, eBird/Clements will henceforth refer to new world hummingbirds as “Micro-Lammergeier.”

Moving So Fast They Break Your Bones™

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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 18:31   #6
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You will be disappointed to learn, then, that in keeping with recent nomenclature trends, eBird/Clements will henceforth refer to new world hummingbirds as “Micro-Lammergeier.”

Moving So Fast They Break Your Bones™
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 18:38   #7
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Originally Posted by John Cantelo View Post
I gather the name change came about to avoid confusion with American Black 'Vulture' which, presumably, has the earliest claim to the epithet 'black'.
Does it, though? Has anybody checked that?
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 19:13   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Cantelo View Post
I dislike the current fashion for calling this species "Cinereous Vulture" since "Black Vulture" is how it was widely known as for decades and is descriptively much better. I've less animus about the alternative "Monk Vulture" but Black Vulture is still better. I gather the name change came about to avoid confusion with American Black 'Vulture' which, presumably, has the earliest claim to the epithet 'black'. However, since we in Europe have a far older claim the term 'vulture', I think it's the generic name for the American version that needs changing. After all the American bird isn't a vulture at all but a member of the stork family. Members of Carthartidae should all be called either turkey-vultures for the small ones or condors for the two big fellows.
Except the Cinereous Vulture was poorly named "Black Vulture" to begin with because it isn't black, while the American Black Vulture certainly is. I'm guessing that's why they changed the name of the Eurasian bird but not the American. If you don't like cinereous, how about "Brown Vulture" for the Eurasian beast.

Also, new world vultures are no longer placed in the stork family; they are in their own family, now usually placed in the same order with other "raptors".
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 19:26   #9
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I agree with John's take; Eurasian Back Vultures are much nearer black than cinereous and often look "black" in the field. In those marvelous occasions seeing a bird well in excellent lighting the older birds can look surprisingly pale while the younger birds are deep choclate-brown. But not even close to:

"Grey colour tinged with coppery brown" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinereous

I can't remember anyone I know who sees them a lot that calls them CV.

I think Cinereous BUnting is more apt.

Doesn't bother me much though - there is far worse, like Black-winged or shouldered Kites, which to me is just plain badly named ...thank heavens for scientific names
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 20:03   #10
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Except the Cinereous Vulture was poorly named "Black Vulture" to begin with because it isn't black, while the American Black Vulture certainly is.
'Black Vulture' is, if nothing else, a translation of the species' Spanish name (most British observers will encounter this species in Spain, if at all), and they appear "black" in the field, anyway.


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I'm guessing that's why they changed the name of the Eurasian bird but not the American. If you don't like cinereous, how about "Brown Vulture" for the Eurasian beast.
How about "Zopilote" for the American species? Unlike "vulture", that name is indigenous to the continent.
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 22:58   #11
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Originally Posted by Simon Wates View Post
I agree with John's take; Eurasian Back Vultures are much nearer black than cinereous and often look "black" in the field. In those marvelous occasions seeing a bird well in excellent lighting the older birds can look surprisingly pale while the younger birds are deep choclate-brown. But not even close to:

"Grey colour tinged with coppery brown" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinereous

I can't remember anyone I know who sees them a lot that calls them CV.

I think Cinereous BUnting is more apt.

Doesn't bother me much though - there is far worse, like Black-winged or shouldered Kites, which to me is just plain badly named ...thank heavens for scientific names
Can't see where wikipedia got "Grey colour tinged with coppery brown" from; it's not correct.

Ardea cinerea is another good example of something cinereous colour.
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2017, 23:00   #12
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Originally Posted by Sangahyando View Post
'Black Vulture' is, if nothing else, a translation of the species' Spanish name (most British observers will encounter this species in Spain, if at all), and they appear "black" in the field, anyway.
Portugal for me

Note that the Griffon Vulture in my pic is much closer to cinereous colour

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Originally Posted by Sangahyando View Post
How about "Zopilote" for the American species? Unlike "vulture", that name is indigenous to the continent.
Or just 'Condor' for all the Cathartidae?
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