Buzzard Day

Buzzard Day

Sunday following March 15
About 75 turkey vultures, also known as turkey buzzards, return to Hinckley, Ohio, each March 15 to spend the summer. While these carrion-eating birds may lack the charm of the Swallows of San Juan Capistrano, thousands of people celebrate them at the Hinckley Buzzard Day Festival, held since 1958 on the first Sunday after March 15. It features tours, hikes, and talks by naturalists at Metro Park, where the buzzards roost.
The vultures' return was first documented by a park patrolman who logged their arrival date for 23 years. Why the birds return, however, isn't known. One theory recalls the Great Hinckley Varmint Hunt on Dec. 24, 1818, when 475 men and boys lined up along Hinckley's borders and moved inward, slaughtering predators that were killing farm animals. The tons of carrion, of course, provided fine repasts for vulturine tastes.
CONTACTS:
Hinckley Township
1410 Ridge Rd.
P.O. Box 344
Hinckley, OH 44233
330-278-4181; fax: 330-278-2023
www.hinckleytwp.org
SOURCES:
AnnivHol-2000, p. 44
FolkAmerHol-1999, p. 129
References in periodicals archive ?
Buzzards came to feast on the carrion, and today locals honor their return from southern migration with Buzzard Day, an annual festival on March 15, the day of the Great Hinckley Hunt.
Celebrate the return of this imposing raptor, Cathartes aura, at Buzzard Day in Makoshika State Park, an 11,532-acre park near Glendive.