Rueppell's Vultures leave the roost and using their exceptionally keen eyesight begin to patrol over the plains, to find large animal carcasses. If carnivores have made a recent kill they will wait, several days if necessary, until the carnivore leaves the carcass. They have been known to attack live prey, although this is very rare.
Using thermal currents, Rueppell’s can reach great heights, 20,000 ft (6,000 m) is not uncommon, and on one exceptional occasion, a commercial aircraft collided with a Rueppell's Vulture at the astonishing altitude of 37,000 ft (11,300 m) - the current record for avian height.
Vultures normally only take to the air to look for food.