The California Foundation for Birds of Prey was started in the 1990’s with the vision of rescuing raptors in need, providing quality veterinary care as they heal and releasing them back to the wild. Certainly like many raptor rehabilitation organizations; raptor rehabilitation, education and conservation were at the forefront. With time and experience CFBP became well respected in their efforts. CFBP has developed two raptor programs that go beyond the common rehabilitation efforts: the free flight program and the eagle program. The free flight program utilizes general and master falconers for evaluation of raptors needing special handling or evaluation that a flight chamber cannot provide. To date, falconers have evaluated more than 200 raptors for CFBP. Every effort is made to release the raptor back to the wild, however with those considered non-releasable; efforts are made to place these raptors with educational facilities if the raptors’ behavior and adjustment to a captive life is acceptable. The second program is the eagle program. CFBP has experienced over the years that the nestling or fledgling golden eagles do not develop the proper hunting skills and survival techniques in a flight chamber. These eagles, when released are not properly trained for survival in the wild. Nestling or fledgling golden eagles are first placed in the eagle flight chamber to be with other eagles to help decrease any potential imprinting. After 2-4 months, they are then placed with a master falconer to be trained to ride the thermals, soar the cliff edges, pursue and catch game before they are released back to the wild.
Over time CFBP has realized that there is a lack of medical programs, training techniques and proper protocols for long term care of the raptors. This has led to the formation of the Bird of Prey Health Group (BPHG), an inter-professional group transforming health care for birds of prey. BPHG will partner with our local wildlife groups to provide medical care to injured raptors at our medical facility. On a local and national level, BPHG has formed a specialty veterinary team capable of providing health exams, recommended treatment and rehabilitation protocols and wellness programs for the raptors.
The name change reflects this organization’s dedication to raptor health. BPHG will continue to care for those raptors with special needs. The free flight program will continue to soar. Read about the Bird of Prey Health Group, our vision and goals on the following page. We hope you are as enthused as we are!!! Come fly with us!!!!