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Flying visits keep residents intrigued

We don’t often get to see birds of prey at close quarters, so it was a very special occasion when a kestrel, falcon and two owls visited CNC.

The birds and their handlers were from Wings of Freedom, a charity that works to rescue, rehabilitate and educate people about birds of prey. Wings of Freedom is also keen to demonstrate the therapeutic benefits that come from interacting with these beautiful creatures.

The demonstrator has been involved with birds of prey all his life since he was six years old. He followed the local vets and learnt how to mend broken wings and treat sick birds of prey. He is now 70 years old. His grandfather was master falconer to the late Queen Mother. He showed a barn owl and it was amazing to witness it beautiful serene face, white soft down gently cascading in tones of beige. The kestrel was so lovely with its intelligent eyes and hues of brown.

Residents were spellbound as a couple of the birds perched quietly on their covered arms or even in their laps, in the case of the delightful, little kestrel.

The birds had travelled all the way from their home in Newbury, Berkshire but were still pretty relaxed by the time they arrived as they are well used to such visits. You could see from the expressions on residents’ faces that they found their feathered guests mesmerizing, soothing and a little bit awe inspiring.

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