WHY a Vulture Fest?
Beginning in 2005, hundreds of Vultures (Turkey and Black) have made Wenonah, New Jersey their winter home, returning each evening to form a communal
roost in town (their previous winter roost was lost to development). The scientific name
for Turkey Vultures, Cathartes aura ("golden purifier"), refers to
their role of cleansing the environment. Yet the behavior and beneficial
contributions of vultures are not well understood by the public. In 2006, the East Coast Vulture Festival
was created as an annual event both to educate
the public about the gentle giants circling our skies, and to celebrate the
impending end of winter. Festival proceeds were and are used to support local environmental
The festival organizers have decided not to hold an event in March,
2014. The organizers are considering expanding the festival's theme
to create a Mid-Winter Festival in February, 2015.
This short video report from 6ABC Action News provides a good overview of how the
Festival came into existence: