Take a walk on the wild side at Carolina Raptor Center's Raptor Trail.
Catch wonder by the tail with our formal and informal education programs. Children 3 to 93 will delight the science and natural history of 38 raptor species and how they have inspired human invention.
Staff and volunteers at this hidden hospital in the woods treats over 900 injured and orphaned birds a year – more than any other US raptor center. Over 70% are released back into the wild!
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Photo of the Wendy Ella Guilford Owl Research Observatory in Winter. Photo by Carly Smith.
And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand; they danced by the light of the moon. – Edward Lear, The Owl and the Pussycat
What happens here?
Exercise is a critical part of the rehabilitation process. After significant injuries such as fractured wings, getting back into shape is very important. An owl may spend 3-6 weeks in a large enclosure stretching out stiff limbs, strengthening its atrophied flight muscles and building stamina.
Wendy Ella Guilford Owl Research Observatory Details
Many owls are admitted to CRC with head trauma and/or eye injuries. After those injuries have resolved, CRC staff and volunteers need to be able to evaluate a bird’s vision in order to determine if a bird can be released into the wild. This evaluation may involve simply observing a birds’ flight patterns or response to stimuli, or it may require live prey testing.
Nestling owls admitted to CRC need to develop good hunting skills just as they would in the wild. The parent birds will continue to supplement their diet while they are learning to become successful hunters. At CRC, staff and volunteers monitor the weight of each bird and supplement their diet with dead mice while they are practicing their skills.
The Wendy Ella Guilford Owl Research Observatory is made possible through a generous gift by Sarah H. Lambrecht in loving memory of her mother, Wendy Ella Guilford.