Every few months I bring my dogs to a groomer who operates out of a small storefront in a strip mall. I typically schedule them for an early morning appointment so I can run errands while they get groomed, and then pick them up by noon.
I’ve noticed on my last few trips another early riser, a large group of black vultures roosting on the roofs of the stores and on top of the parking lot lights. Not entirely unsurprising, since vultures are known to feed out of dumpsters in populated areas.
I used to look at their early morning presence as an interesting curiosity, until I spent some time reading up on them, and learned that they occasionally will corner a baby deer or cow, stun it by gouging out its eyes, and then swarm in for the kill. Now I look at them with a greater degree of respect, and hope they stay on top of the buildings.