A HUGE thank you to our Bank Holiday visitors who made our first ever Raptor Day a flyaway success and helped us raise a whopping £869.95!
Thousands of people visited the 11th century castle courtyard to see our birds of prey, which included harris hawks, a red-footed falcon, common buzzard and a Northern White-faced Owl, as keepers spoke about their plight as well as the threats facing British species such as the barn owl and kestrel who have seen a dramatic reduction in their numbers over recent years.
Bird Keeper, Kriss Pearson, pictured left, who organised the event, said: “It was a fantastic day and we were delighted with the amount of money we raised.
“It was a brilliant opportunity to speak to so many visitors and hopefully we’ve ignited an interest in feathered animals!”
Throughout the day keepers raised money to purchase owl and kestrel nesting boxes for the zoo’s 40-acre site, with bird themed games including guess the name of the cuddly owl and guess the number of feathers in a jar.
Plus, we added the funds raised from Monday’s nectar pot sales in Lorikeet Lookout to boost the final total.
Kriss added: “We wanted to raise money for the boxes as the upcoming winter season is the worst for barn owls and kestrels in particular.
“Cold, wet weather prevents them from nesting and hunting and many die of starvation as wet weather also impacts the vole population too, which is their main source of food.
“We’re also hoping to install cameras to the boxes, so visitors can get a closer look at some of our rarer native bird life.”