Our main destination for the overnight trip was Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre  in Rotorua. 

They have outdoor demonstrations of the New Zealand falcon that is a threatened species. All their falcons have come to them with injuries. They are then paired up for mating and their offspring are eventually released into the wild.

wingspan, NZ

At Wingspan, they are trained to come at command and, when that is accomplished, they are free to fly wherever they want, as you can see!
wingspan, NZ

wingspan, NZ

Three different birds and handlers informed us of many facts we didn't know.
wingspan, NZ

wingspan, NZ

They were rewarded with a treat of meat.
wingspan, NZ

wingspan, NZ

At the end of the show they surprised us with a beautiful barn owl from Australia.
It seems they have made their way over here (hitching rides) and now are considered endemic because there are quite a few mating pairs here.
wingspan, NZ

This one was rewarded with a mouse which he enjoyed by the look on his face!
wingspan, NZ

wingspan, NZ, barn owl

wingspan, NZ, barn owl

If you are ever in Rotorua, be sure to stop by, it's well worth your time.

                                      Join us at My Corner of the World each Wednesday!


Elkes Lebensglück said...

These are wonderful wild birds and a great demonstration!
Greetings Elke

Taken For Granted said...

Grace, what terrific raptor photos. Those falcons are well trained, and the barn owl is a great looking bird.

At Home In New Zealand said...

They are beautiful birds, aren't they. I didn't know barn owls had established here - would love to see one :)

kiwikid said...

Beautiful photos Betty, it is a shame those beautiful birds are in danger, but good if the young can be released into the wild. So the owls come on boats from Australia?? They are also beautiful looking birds.

Angie said...

Betty - outstanding photographs. I especially like the ones of the barn owl - the look on its face does appear to be pure rapture!

Crafty Green Poet said...

Great photos, the barn owl is beautiful

rupam sarma said...

Amazing bird pics.

Rhodesia said...

When I lived in Rhodesia I worked for a vet who was also a falconer. The birds really seemed to enjoy life and they also flew where they wanted to pretty much. Fabulous photos, I enjoyed seeing these, Stay safe and keep well, Diane

jesus alvarez said...

Bellas imagenes, saludos desde España, un abrazo.

Zinaida Strinu said...

Beautiful birds! I love especially the owls.

Have a great day, dear Betty!

kiwimeskreations said...

Amazing - I must go there - it's only 45 minutes from me...
Stay safe