Back in March my sister was coming in town with her girls for their spring break but it was the week after ours so I told my mom that if I was going to take my kiddos out of school I wanted it to be fun and educational. Or at least out in nature somewhere. I was fine with a cool hike or something but at the last minute she called a friend and WOW did we get an experience of a lifetime!
We have a family friend that volunteers at The World Bird Sanctuary and he took us for a behind-the-scenes tour that was absolutely amazing!
We got to spend time in the hospital – that pelican has an injured leg and hops around on one foot all the time. The kids loved him!
Our friend, Mr Baldwin, taught the kids about everything we were seeing and all that the employees were doing with the birds. He was me and Abbie’s middle school science teacher – once a teacher always a teacher!
They got to watch this injured owl be hand fed mouse bits!
Then we went outside to see some of the resident birds.
But we got to be IN the bird area and not behind the fence like normal – the kids thought that was SO cool!
Then he let the adults and kids go into the flying cages where birds/owls that are getting better have some room to start flying again.
Then we met some more birds…
Oh Parker! That kid’s facial expressions crack us up!
After we toured the main part of the sanctuary he took us to the part that the public never gets to see! I didn’t even know this all existed because it’s tucked into Castlewood State Park and a little drive from the actual WBS. Here they have another hospital, HUGE flying cages (above), living quarters for interns and more space for birds to live. In that photo above you can see part of the huge flying room… we all had to first squeeze into that screened in room, close the outside door and then go in. It was pretty funny trying to get us all in that small space!
Can you see the bird flying?
The kids LOVED finding the dead mice. SO gross.
Bailey is the best big sister but also loves to be the big sister to her cousins!
This next photo is pretty graphic but if our kids could handle it I think you can too – it’s an intern cutting up a rabbit as food.
We love Mr. Baldwin and a whole new generation of “Kuhn’s” love him too! They had a BLAST and he was so patient with all of their questions!
The World Bird Sanctuary ALWAYS needs help – something as simple as taking cleaning products every time you visit, or trash bags, towels, rags, etc. Take a look at their website to see if you can donate something the next time you go out there!