Hawk, Hawk, Vulture, Eagle

Four Critter Tales

  • Cooper’s Hawk Not Quite Released

    Martin introduced a Cooper’s Hawk that he planned to release. In chambers, the hawk seemed ready, however after released in a more open area, Martin noticed the hawk was still not flying quite right. He brought him back and after a couple more weeks, the hawk was released was again, fully recovered.

  • Arrival of Sharp-Shinned Hawk

    This hawk was brought to Martin one night after having been caught up in fishing line. Martin examined the hawk, noticed some problems. The hawk stayed for awhile for some TLC and was released back to the wild.

  • A quick peek at the Halloween Vulture

    Susan takes a quick peek in at the recovering Turkey Vulture from a good distance away. As the birds recover, they are left alone as much as possible so they stay calm and do not get agitated and reinjure themselves.

  • Martin and Scout on the job!

    This is a snippet from an educational program Martin and his birds provided to the Las Vegas Audubon chapter. With Scout on his arm, Martin shares information about eagles and his an experience in hunting with his one of his eagles.

Slow Down for Eagles

In this video, we try to stress the need to be alert for eagles on the road. We show three of instances of eagles that were hit by vehicles and Martin discusses this problem, why it happens and how to help prevent it.

For more information, please visit our Guides page to download materials for sharing and classroom use.

Belle the Harris Hawk Training Part Two

Belle the Harris Hawk
Belle the Harris Hawk is our newest Wildlife Ambassador. In addition to attending educational presentations with Martin, she is a falconry bird. Her full story can be viewed in this YouTube Playlist.

In this video, Martin begins her training with sometime on the glove walking around in the desert and becoming accustomed to him, the glove and her surroundings. She is also given time to adjust to a hood being placed on her head.

She is later taught to jump from perch to his glove and learning to recognize that the sound of the whistle means food.

More of her early training days will be shown in future videos.

Young and Skinny Great Horned Owl

Martin was called about this owl near the side of a road. It had been hit by a car and was unable to fly. Upon catching the owl, Martin noticed he was very thin.

Feeling nothing broken, Martin determined likely a concussion and soft tissue damage.

The owl stayed with us for about a month rehabbing and was released on October 16th.

The Halloween Vulture

This Turkey Vulture arrived in late September. After an initial examination, Martin expressed concerned for one of the vulture’s wings. The vulture is still recovering, and was moved to a larger chamber a couple weeks ago.

Piper the Prairie Falcon Training Part Two

Piper the Prairie FalconPiper is our Prairie Falcon Wildlife Ambassador. His training began back in July. The series of videos about piper can be viewed at this YouTube Playlist.

In this video, Martin works with Piper in his yard, teaching him first elementary steps of falconry training like his first jump from perch to glove. Martin explains each step as he shows the training process.

Sick and Near Starved Eagle

A very thin Golden Eagle arrived to our rehab facility

This Golden Eagle arrived at early evening. After a thorough check over, Martin found no phyical problems so moved him to a chamber and prepared a meal for him.

The eagle struggled to swallow the meal and was very weak in Martin arms. There was not much improvement during the second feeding at 3am.

Come morning, the eagle showed clear signs of recovery, moving around the chamber. Martin cut up a rabbit carcass for him and left him to feed himself.

This eagle recovered fully and was released by a teacher during one of Martin’s school wildlife education programs at the Parowan Gap.

Eagle Arrived Unconsious

A very sick young Golden Eagle was brought to Martin

This eagle arrived at night, as weak as could be. With doubts for recovery, Martin immediately began care. As the eagle struggled to even swallow, she received around the clock small feedings.

After about 24 hours with Martin’s care, the eagle showed some signs of perking up. After a day of just sitting still, when Martin arrived to feed her, she moved away from him.

On day three, she finally began to eat on her own, taking food from a rabbit’s carcass which is a fairly common meal for eagles.

She had a long road to recovery, being left mostly alone to regain her strength and gain weight.

About a month later, on release day, she weighed near a whopping 13 pounds and was very ready to return to the wild.

This eagle was released from C-Overlook in Cedar City by Martin. Because she was so big, he wanted to handle her himself.

Four Hawk Stories

And all four have happy endings!

This video includes short tales of four hawks: two Swainson’s Hawks and two Cooper’s Hawks.

In story one, Martin captures a healthy recovered Swainson’s Hawk from one of the rehabilitation chambers. The Hawk is healthy and ready to return back to the wild where he belongs.

This release had some urgency to it in that the Swainson’s Hawks were due to begin their migration.

The same urgency held for release of hawk number two. Both were this year’s young and after a recovery have their second chance to make in the wild.

Both Cooper’s Hawks in the video were caught after a big meal. The first helped himself to a pigeon in Martin’s yard. The second captured sparrows in someone’s front yard.

After a quick check over to make sure they hadn’t injured themselves, Martin set them free.

Belle the Harris Hawk’s Early Training

Belle’s first training session!

After a few days to recover after her trip from New Orleans to Utah, Martin begins Belle’s training as a falconry bird. Much of her early training is about getting her comfortable and feeling secure in her new home. The more time he spends with her in a secure and respectful way, the better all her training will go.

Belle will pull double duty at the Southwest Wildlife Foundation as both a falconry bird and wildlife ambassador. As a falconry bird, she will hunt and provide natural foods for the injured animals we care for. In her role as a Wildlife Ambassador, she will attend countless educational talks with Martin.

In both cases, the better her relationship with Martin, the more secure she will feel.

See the story of Belle’s arrival here!