Each year, HWI’s eight Raptor Ambassadors reach over 40,000 people with messages about raptors, science, and conservation. It’s true! But reaching this many people isn’t easy. To do so, our Raptor Ambassadors need to have strong appetites, cooperate with their human companions, and use their beauty and power to draw people in and inspire them.
If you’ve forgotten exactly whoo’s whoo at HWI or what makes each bird tick, check out their Raptor Report Cards below.
Each bird was graded in six areas, with a score of Outstanding (O), Satisfactory (S), or Needs Improvement (N). Which of our eight birds do you think is performing the best these days?
A male Western Red-tailed Hawk, Calurus joined the team at HWI in 1992. He sustained a wing injury when he was caught in a barbed-wire fence in California. Melissa says that he’s a seasoned pro and an excellent example to others. After 30 years in the field, who wouldn’t be?!
Unfortunately, Calurus isn’t the only raptor to fall victim to a barbed-wire fence. Our Short-eared Owl, Galileo, was found in one in the summer of 2016 in Northern Utah. After his rough start in life, it probably isn’t surprising that Galileo can be a little shy and uncertain, but he’s made great strides over the years and we’re excited to see him continue to spread his wings.
Like most students, Artemis likes staying up late and hates waking up early for programs. She can’t help that she's nocturnal! Artemis came to work with HWI in 2014 after she was hit by a car while hunting for prey. Car collisions are the most common cause of injury in raptors, so keep your eyes peeled for birds of prey next time you get behind the wheel.
Kotori came to us after receiving care for an eye infection as a nestling at a rehab. While he was there, he received too much exposure to humans at a young age so he never learned how to really be an owl! Kotori is a bit of an angsty teen. At first he can be a bit bitey, but once you get to know him he will coo and hoot for you!
Goose has never liked being told what to do, considering she is likely an escaped falconry bird. That being said, Goose always takes a bath before programs to look her best. She's also not afraid to show off the call responsible for her name. Did you know that Peregrines make honking sounds just like geese?
Jack is the new kid in town, joining HWI in 2018. He is evidence that just because you’re small, doesn’t mean your voice is too! We are very proud that even though Jack is our newest member, he feels comfortable enough to speak up in class.
Our Bald Eagle shows great potential in being a Raptor Ambassador. We have spent a lot of time working with Hali, trying to get her more comfortable in front of big audiences. She has shown major improvement since she first joined the team in 2017 and we are excited to see more growth in the future.
Eagles often get a bad rap as being difficult to work with, but Chrys completely shatters that stereotype. Just like Artemis, Chrys came to HWI because he sustained an injury to his wing after a car accident. In our conservation science department, we have a whole study devoted to this issue called the Eagle Vehicle Strike Project. Through this project, we hope to keep eagles like Chrys safe.
You can support our birds and education staff this back-to-school season by shopping on our Amazon Wishlist: https://smile.amazon.com/hz/charitylist/ls/2QIHF1PYM67KA?triggerElementID=editItemSettings_ASIN%3AB00545C8U6%7CATVPDKIKX0DER&
Rather shop local? That’s fine too, you can use our wishlist as a jumping-off point and send the items to our birds at 2240 S 900 E, Salt Lake City, UT 84106.
Want to leave the buying to the experts? Chip in to support these Raptor Ambassadors and their educator coworkers as they work to close the nature gap this school year.