Circling high above the South African plains, nature's own sanitation crew spots another clean-up site. Cape vultures provide an invaluable service to the farmers below, disposing of carcasses and preventing the spread of disease. But Wild Chronicles has discovered that some vultures are dying, and the farmers may be playing a role.

  1. How soon do vultures arrive to feast on a fresh carcass?

    • Answer

      Vultures can arrive within minutes.

  2. Why do some South African farmers put poison in carcasses on their land?

    • Answer

      Farmers hope to poison jackals, a scavenger that also preys on livestock.

  3. How is Dr. Gerhard Verdoorn working to reduce the unintended vulture deaths?

    • Answer

      He is working with farmers to set more efficient, humane traps that only target jackals.

carcass
Noun

dead body.

disease
Noun

harmful condition of a body part or organ.

farmer
Noun

person who cultivates land and raises crops.

invaluable
Adjective

priceless, or extremely valuable.

Noun

flat, smooth area at a low elevation.

sanitation
Noun

promotion of hygiene, health, and cleanliness.

vulture
Noun

bird that mostly eats dead animals.