AUBURN, AL - The Southeastern Raptor Center, in collaboration with the City of Auburn Parks and Recreation Department, will release owls into the wild at Kiesel Park on Thursday, July 8.
The center will host an educational program at 6:30 p.m., followed by the owl release at 7 p.m. Citizens are encouraged to bring a picnic and enjoy the scenery at Kiesel Park while taking part in this unique event.
The majority of the birds to be released are barred and Eastern screech owls. "Most of these birds were healthy fledglings that were mistaken for orphans," said Liz Crandall, veterinary technician with the Southeastern Raptor Center.
Crandall will talk about not removing young, healthy wildlife; a history of the birds being released; and raptors. Two red-tailed hawks, used for educational purposes, will also be on hand.
The mission of the center's rehabilitation section is to rehabilitate injured, ill, or orphaned birds of prey. Annually, the Southeastern Raptor Center takes in between 200 and 275 birds of prey from across the Southeast.
Birds are generally brought in by members of the public, a network of southeastern rehabilitators and educational facilities, and state and federal agencies.
"Most of the birds come from within a 60-mile radius," said Crandall.
The Southeastern Raptor Center is part of the Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine. For more information, please call 334-844-3698.