More vultures headed for extinction, this time in South Africa

Seven of South Africa's vulture species are threatened with extinction, according to the Endangered Wildlife Trust, which made the announcement in advance of tomorrow's National Vulture Awareness Day.

Why the awareness day? It turns out that traditional medicine and poaching are major threats to some of these vulture species. EWT estimates that "should the current rate of medicinal use continue... some vulture species will be extinct in South Africa by 2020."

Meanwhile, according to EWT, poachers poison the vultures, then sell the tainted meat in markets where it could in turn poison anyone who eats it.

Other threats to South Africa's vultures include electrocution and collision with powerlines and loss of habitat.

Previously in Extinction Blog: Last-minute drug ban could save India's almost-extinct vultures