THE SUFFOLK OWL SANCTUARY
Established as a registered charity in 2001, the Suffolk Owl Sanctuary is based at Stonham Aspal in Suffolk, where it operates a comprehensive facility for the care & rehabilitation of owls from the region, and the promotion of owl conservation throughout the UK and beyond. The Sanctuary is open to the public all year round where it maintains the following services as the beneficiary of public donations.
A RAPTOR HOSPITAL FOR INJURED WILD OWLS & OTHER BIRDS OF PREY
The Owl & Raptor Hospital at S.O.S. is fully equipped for the care and treatment of the many injured wild owls & other birds of prey which are brought into the Sanctuary every year. Many of these can be given a recuperative overnight pick-me-up before being re-released back to the wild shortly thereafter.
FLIGHT RECOVERY AVIARIES FOR RECUPERATING WILD OWLS
Owls that are more seriously injured but stand a good chance of mid- to long-term recovery are given medical aid & sometimes surgery, and are then allowed the space & time to fully recuperate in one of the secluded flight recovery aviaries at the Sanctuary before returning to the wild. Regrettably, injured owls that are brought into the Sanctuary but are professionally judged to be beyond the pale, with no hope of meaningful quality of life, are euthanased by a vet.
A HACK-BACK TEAM WHICH SAFELY INTRODUCES RECOVERED OWLS BACK TO THE WILD
SOS also receives a number of nestlings and these require specialised handling from the Hack-Back team, who also manage the careful rehabilitation of birds who have been at the Sanctuary for a long period of time recuperating.. A temporary hack box (an enlarged nest box with a mesh-covered outdoor area) is sited in a suitable location from where these birds will gradually be reintroduced back to their natural environment.
OWL EDUCATION VISITS TO SCHOOLS & COLLEGES
Giving talks and setting projects for schools, agricultural colleges and disenfranchised groups who either visit the Sanctuary or to whom we out-reach, is the focus of our Education Team and the Wise Owl Roadshow for Schools. We also consult with landowners and farmers with advice for those interested in developing suitable habitat or nesting locations for owls in the wild.
A NESTBOX SCHEME WHICH BUILDS AND MAINTAINS NEW HABITAT FOR WILD OWLS
One of the most important spheres of operation for the Sanctuary is the S.O.S. Wild Owl Nest Box Scheme. This includes the time-consuming search for suitable locations for man-made nest boxes (the availability of proper habitat and sufficient natural prey species being the chief determining factors); the building and secure erection of nest boxes made from safe, long-lasting, environmentally friendly materials; and the careful monitoring of nesting activity within the boxes that form part of the network.
FREE INFORMATION & ADVICE ON OWL CARE & CONSERVATION
Our Information & Advice Centre is open every day of the year except at Christmas. During summer months demonstrations featuring owls in flight are given with commentaries which inform visitors about the lifestyles, habitats and conservation status of British owls and other birds of prey.
Extending the reach of information and advice about owls beyond the confines of the Sanctuary is covered through the publication of various freely-available leaflets on specific and general related topics. In recent years the round-the-clock manning of a Q-&-A Website at www.owl-help.org.uk offers immediate qualified response to enquiries from around the world - last year, we handled over 1000 e-mail questions about owls, their care & conservation from as far afield as Alaska!
If you would like a FREE copy of our booklet “Saving Britain’s Owls”, please e-mail us with your name & address
The Sanctuary is also open to the public all year round as a delightful place to visit to watch, study or simply enjoy the company of Owls and other birds of prey.If you are unable to visit the Sanctuary but would like to make a donation in support of our work, please click here for further details