|Texts||Ramayana and its other versions|
In the Hindu epic Ramayana, Jatayu (Sanskrit: जटायुः, IAST: Jaṭāyuḥ) is a demi-god who has the form of a vulture. He is the younger son of Aruṇa and his wife Shyeni, the brother of Sampati, as well as the nephew of Garuda and an old friend of Dasharatha (Rama's father).
Araṇya-Kāṇḍa of Ramayana mentions that Jatayu is the "King of Vultures"(gidharāja). According to the epic, the demon Ravana was abducting the goddess Sita when Jatayu tried to rescue her. Jatayu fought valiantly with Ravana, but as Jatayu was very old Ravana soon defeated him, clipping his wings, and Jayatu fell to earth. Rama and Lakshmana while searching for Sita, chanced upon the stricken and dying Jatayu, who informed them of the battle with Ravana and told them that Ravana had headed South. Jatayu then died of his wounds and Rama performed his final funeral rites.