Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus)

Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus)_7

This is a vulture. This is obviously a vulture to anyone who has ever seen a vulture anywhere.

Nonetheless, this bird is also known as a “gier-eagle” (derived from the Hebrew root for “to love”, reflecting that the birds live in mated pairs.) It is listed as an unclean animal in Deuteronomy 14:17 and Leviticus 11:13.

Yet, for some reason, it is also known as a “Pharaoh’s chicken”, though the Internet is rather less enlightening as to why except that it might be the fault of Henry Hunter (1741–1802) of the Church of Scotland.