C. aura or Turkey Vulture Skull Replica measures 3.7 inches. Turkey Vulture Skull Replica is Museum quality cast in polyurethane resins. Made in the USA. 2-part skull (separate cranium and jaw).

The C. aura or turkey vulture forages by smell, an ability that is uncommon in the avian world, often flying low to the ground to pick up the scent of ethyl mercaptan, a gas produced by the beginnings of decay in dead animals.

The olfactory lobe of its brain, responsible for processing smells, is particularly large compared to that of other animals.

This heightened ability to detect odors allows it to search for carrion below the forest canopy. King vultures, black vultures, and condors, which lack the ability to smell carrion, follow the turkey vulture to carcasses.

The C. aura or turkey vulture arrives first at the carcass, or with greater yellow-headed vultures or lesser yellow-headed vultures, which also share the ability to smell carrion.

The C. aura or turkey vulture feeds primarily on a wide variety of carrion, from small mammals to large grazers, preferring those recently dead, and avoiding carcasses that have reached the point of putrefaction.

They may rarely feed on plant matter, shoreline vegetation, pumpkin, coconut and other crops, live insects and other invertebrates. In South America, turkey vultures have been photographed feeding on the fruits of the introduced oil palm.

They rarely, if ever, kill prey themselves; when they do it tends to comprise small weak offspring or very sick individuals of various animals, such as bird eggs and nestlings, as well as reptiles.

C. aura or Turkey vultures have also been observed eating coyote and domestic animal dung. The turkey vulture can often be seen along roadsides feeding on roadkill, or near bodies of water, feeding on washed-up fish. They also will feed on fish or insects that have become stranded in shallow water.

It sometimes comes to rubbish dumps, but in general, is a rather different kind of scavenger from the black vulture.

Like other vultures, it plays an important role in the ecosystem by disposing of carrion, which would otherwise be a breeding ground for disease.