Camera Shy

The Suffolk Owl Sanctuary has run its adopt-an-owl program for a number of years and every adoption helps to support the vital conservation work that we do here.  Although the Centre is called an owl sanctuary, we also house a variety of birds of prey from all the five raptor groups; eagles, owls, falcons, hawks and buzzards and of course our tremendous character ‘Gypsy’, the black vulture.

Trial & error... no matter what Andy did, Pungu did NOT want to watch the birdie!

The final result - a stunning picture  of a stunning bird...

The final result - a stunning pictureof a stunning bird...

Up until last year all our adoptive birds were owls, but we thought it would be appropriate to have a couple of representatives of our other resident bird of prey species too.  One of these is Comet the Peregrine Falcon, one of our flying display stars who frequently delights visitors with his incredible speed and agility. The other is Pungu the Bateleur Eagle, a real personality with a definite mind of her own.

When you adopt one of the birds here at the Sanctuary, you receive a certificate and a stunning, professional photograph of your chosen raptor with our compliments.  Last year, when Pungu had her photo taken, she still had her juvenile brown feathers, but her plumage has changed considerably since then, so Andy asked our friend and professional photographer Paul Sawer if he would come and take some more up-to-date pictures.

To be fair it was a bit cold and windy (well freezing and blowing a gale if the truth be told) so maybe it wasn’t entirely surprising that Pungu decided she wasn’t in her most obliging mood.  Whichever angle Paul stood at with his camera, Pungu helpfully sat hunched up looking the other way or gazed loving at Andy instead of the camera.

Amongst other things however, Paul runs some of our extremely popular photo days, so he’s well used to the vagaries of animal photography!  It wasn’t too long before he caught Pungu looking her radiant best and, it must be said, we think Pungu herself might have been rather taken with the results.

Coming on a treat…

A few weeks ago, I reported that the S.O.S team were hard at work laying the foundations for a new suite of aviaries and I must say, the guys have been doing a sterling job.  From mere gaping holes in the ground, concrete has been laid, foliage planted and the structure is definitely beginning to take shape.  There’s still a fair bit of work to be done yet, but hopefully it shouldn’t be too long before our flying display birds have plush new homes to inhabit.

Work in progress... the new aviaries near completion

Work in progress... the new aviaries near completion

The new Red Squirrel enclosure is also beginning to take shape, although much of the work so far has involved re-structuring the existing pens.  Matt has worked hard on the new design, which looks complicated, but will no doubt all become clear in due course and promises to be a secure and stimulating environment for our small colony.