Eyes in the Sky's Open House
updated: Sep 11, 2013, 11:57 AM
By Gabriele Drozdowski of Eyes in the Sky and photos by Anthony Galvan III
Eyes in the Sky's first Open House fundraiser was a lovely, and very
Children really enjoyed the owl pellet dissection station, and adults
couldn't resist either.
Volunteer Zoe enjoys a quiet moment with 18+ year old Red-tailed hawk
The Museum's raptor collection was a big draw for children. Rebecca Coulter
shows and explains different kinds of raptors. The long-tailed one is a
Coopers hawk. Its long tail feathers serve to easily maneuver through
wooded areas when hunting birds.
Volunteer Bonnie introduces three year old Peregrine falcon to amazed
visitors. Kisa was gunshot shortly after fledging, and still has the bullet
in her shoulder. Removal would have damaged more muscles/tendons in her
shoulder area. She can no longer fly.
Barn owl "Athena" gets ready for a stage presentation with volunteer Coni.
Athena was also hit by a car. She lost eyesight in one eye, and now has
depth perception problems that cause her to miss perches at times.
Hit-by-car is the most common cause of injury or death for raptors. As they
search for prey, an animal crossing a highway, for a few seconds, gives them
a perfect unobstructed view to go for the kill.
A bird version of "pin the tail on the donkey", created by volunteer Chris,
has visitors match the correct bird feather to pictures of EITS birds, plus
learn lots of amazing facts about feathers.
"Kanati" EITS 2 year old male American kestrel in all his glory.
Volunteers Cemre (with 9+ year old female "Kachina") and Laurel (with 2 year
old "Kanati") sharing details about kestrels with visitors. Both of EITS'
kestrels were hit by cars, and have permanently damaged wings. Their nick
names are "Harold and Maude".
"Max", EITS' 15 year old Great horned owl, doesn't particularly care for
people coming up from behind him. Max is an "imprinted owl", having been
raised by humans without exposure to other owls at an early age. He thinks
he is part human, and cannot be released in the wild, as he has a tendency
to fly on people's heads. Max also thinks of his caretaker Gabriele
Drozdowski as his mate (Great horned owls mate for life). His wild
parenting instincts, however, are still intact, and along with participating
in over a thousand local school and community presentations, Max has raised
76 orphaned Great horned owlets for release back in the wild.
You can meet our birds at the Museum of Natural History every afternoon
between 2 and 4 pm, when their handlers bring them out for outdoor time and
close-up encounters with visitors.
Eyes in the Sky, Santa Barbara Audubon Society
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