Red-Headed Vulture

Sarc­o­gyps calvus

Asian Geographic - - WILDLIFE -

Sta­tus: Crit­i­cally En­dan­gered Re­gion: Bangladesh, Cam­bo­dia, China, In­dia, Laos, Myan­mar, Nepal and Viet­nam

Pop­u­la­tion re­main­ing: 2,500 – 9,999

The red-headed vulture is the sole mem­ber of the Sarc­o­gyps genus and is one of the few species of large vul­tures that live alone or as a breed­ing pair. They are found at an al­ti­tude of up to 2500m in wooded hills and forests in semi-arid ar­eas and semi-deserts. Its strik­ing bald head was thought to pro­tect it from in­fec­tion but may ac­tu­ally help the bird reg­u­late body tem­per­a­ture. Pre­vi­ously com­mon in South­east Asia, this species has been rapidly de­creas­ing in num­bers in the re­cent past. Its de­cline has been at­trib­uted to the use of the drug Di­clofenac by vet­eri­nar­i­ans.

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