BBC Springwatch presenter, Chris Packham is to officially open a new Rehabilitation Aviary Wing at the Hawk Conservancy Trust – home of the National Bird of Prey Hospital, near Andover, Hampshire.
On Sunday 13 April, Chris, who is the President of the Hawk Conservancy Trust, will cut the ribbon of the new purpose-built aviaries, providing the National Bird of Prey Hospital with a vital new resource.
Each year over 200 sick, injured or orphaned wild raptors can be admitted to the hospital. The birds are treated and cared for by expert avian vet John Chitty and an experienced and dedicated team of staff at the hospital.
Penny Smout, Chief Executive Officer of the Hawk Conservancy Trust, says: “The goal is to return each patient to the wild, and the new aviaries will play a key part in the rehabilitation process as birds recover and are prepared for release. Some Raptors need extensive fitness training after longer periods of recovery, and the 25m by 3m new aviaries will give these recovering birds the best chance to regain fitness prior to their release.”
The new wing, situated adjacent to the hospital, consists of five aviaries and eight bays, and can house up to 25 birds.
The aviaries have been built as a result of generous donations from the Senior Members of Wycombe Heights Golf Centre and the Hawk Conservancy Trust 100 Club, and were supported by Plain Action as part of the Rural Development Programme for England (2007-2013).