Raptor Encounters

Raptor Encounters Cover

Staffer introduces a visitor to vulture babies during the Vulture Venture summer raptor encounter. Photo by Jessica Hudgins.

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Never a day passes but that I do myself the honor to commune with some of nature's varied forms. – George Washington Carver

What (or whom?) will you encounter on the Raptor Trail?

Enjoy a variety of "nose to beak" encounters with some of our most interesting raptor species. It is sure to ellicit wonder in your whole family. Tickets will be sold online up until 24 hours before the encounter.

Raptor Encounters Details 

Offered most Saturdays at 11am and most Sundays at 1 pm
Through December 2018 — Check calendar for details.
Not ADA accessible.
Must be 10 or older to participate, children 16 and under must be accompanied by a paying adult.
Fees include Regular Admission.

30-minute Eagle Encounter

Take a step into the Eagle Aviary if you dare, have a conversation with Zlaty, the Golden Eagle, and tour Marcy’s Eagle Research Observatory. During this 30-minute encounter, participants will get “nose to beak” with some of our Bald and Golden Eagle residents and have an opportunity to take a photograph with one of these majestic creatures. The Eagle Encounter costs $35 members/$43/non-members (includes admission fee). Reservations are recommended. Limited to 6 participants. 

Private Encounters

Can’t make one of the scheduled raptor encounters? You can work with our staff to schedule your own private Nose-to-Beak Experience! Please note that some of our encounters are only offered at certain times of the year. See options below. Please email Colleen Roddick at croddick@carolinaraptorcenter.org and include what programs you are interested in, the size of your group and some possible dates and times in your email.

Eagle Encounter (30 minutes)
Want to get nose to beak with one of America’s most revered animals? Check out our Eagle Encounter to learn about some of our favorite birds! Have your camera ready for a photo-op! A private Eagle Encounter costs $175 for up to 4 people and is offered year round.

Owl Encounter (30 minutes)
Love owls but have trouble seeing them in the middle of the night? Come spend time with these swift hunters of the night by getting up close and nose to beak with them! Have your camera ready for a photo-op! A private Owl Encounter costs $175 for up to 4 people and is offered year round.

Training Encounter (60 minutes)
Ever wonder how our birds are trained? Well, let us show you! You’ll have the opportunity to meet multiple species and get a behind the scenes look at how we train our birds for programs and shows. Help us fly some of our Flight Show stars, take a walk with a vulture, or paint with one of our resident birds! Definitely don’t forget your camera, there will be many photo opportunities! A private Training Encounter costs $275 for up to 4 people and is offered year round.

Heat Index Procedure and Guideline

When the heat index is over 95 degrees CRC will cancel all bird appearances, flight shows, and encounters. If you purchase tickets in advance, someone from our Visitor Services team will contact you directly about the cancelation. If you have any questions about this, please call our Visitor Center at (704) 875-6521 x.107. Please check our website the day of your visit for the most recent changes in program and event schedules.

Why we cancel shows because of heat...more info.