Sunday, August 27, 2006


My family of out laws...whoops, I mean my in-laws, celebrated my brother-in-law's birthday today, and I decided I would practice my educational program skills.
The birds I presented:
The male American kestrel
The red-morph screech owl
The peregrine falcon (aka Lucy)

No wonder Lucy is a favorite. She's just so polite and sweet and beautiful.

As you may have seen in yesterday's post, our little screech owl is molting like mad, so he's, well, not looking his best. (He really is a red-morph...I had to do a fill light to get him to show up on the pic)
The quasi-program went well, except for the hecklers...otherwise known as Isabelle and Lorelei.

The American kestrel has a new name...well, I will be calling him this: I was thinking of names for him, and I thought, "AK (the banding abbreviation of American kestrel)...AK Steel (a steel company in Middletown, where my in-laws live)...male kestrels have steel-gray backs...hmmm..."

So I'm going to call him Steel, and no one can stop me.

"Check please!"


LauraHinNJ said...

So it went well? Did your captive audience ask lots of good questions and look properly rapt?

Good to practice where there's (maybe) less pressure. You and the birds look very comfortable together.


NatureWoman said...

I still love the eyes on your little screech owl! Lucy is so pretty. Steel is a great name!
Do you have a little string tied around them so they don't fly away? You see I know nothing about this, but I'm learning from you!

Susan Gets Native said...

Laura: Aside from the girls chanting "mommy, mommy" and interrupting me, it was good. I liked your use of "rapt". "Rapt for raptors"
Pam: Our program birds are fitting with leather anklets called jesses, and a metal swivel is passed through a slit in those, and a lead is passed through the swivel and wrapped around our hand. The birds aren't going anywhere.

Of course I was rapt said...

Sure, tell your readers that the raptors aren't going anywhere!!

Well, well, well. You conveniently failed to mention that your audience wasn't going anywhere because you placed a piece of raw meat on top of each of our heads and told us to sit still or you would release Lucy.

Michelle said...

Beautiful birds. Though I would be mortified to hold one :) My little Lovebird intimidates me enough :)))

We went to Busch Gardens bird show a few years ago and I was amazed at how silent the owls could fly. They had trained one to fly out over the audience and return when they placed a piece of food on stage. It flew right over my head and I nearly had a heart attack but was in awe of them - birds are very cool, I wish I knew more about them but I am learning!

Are they all housed at your home?

Susan Gets Native said...

All the birds live at our facility. I wouldn't want them in my house, anyway. They eat rats and mice and I have a hard time feeding the raptors since the food is the same species of some of my pets!

Anonymous said...

Is it really true that you forced your in-laws to watch by putting raw meat on their heads? That is shameful!