Rowan was noticed in a homeowner’s yard in the early fall of her first year. Though she was full-grown when she left the nest just a few months earlier, this young hawk was having some difficulty.  She had a major metacarpus (bone at the end of her right wing) fracture. 

During her examination in TRC’s clinic it was discovered she also had a condition called micropthalmia in her right eye.  This is a developmental disorder of the eye in which her right eye is abnormally small and has anatomic malformations. She is blind in her right eye.


Dash was found in a front yard in Askov, Minnesota, in September, 2015.  He was fully grown, but he had probably only been trying out his flight skills for a couple of months.  Merlins hatched in Minnesota generally fledge early to mid-July.


Luta was noticed in a homeowner’s backyard, able to fly but only for short distances low to the ground.  She was just a fledgling, so this behavior was not unusual.  It was mid-June, the time that many red-tailed hawks in Minnesota leave their nests for the first time. 


Talon was found injured near a site in Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where there is a peregrine nest box.  It was thought that she was a youngster hatched near there until TRC staff looked up information from the bands she had on her legs.  Her color band, in this case black/red D/79, was entered into the Midwest Peregrine Society’s database.  She was banded at about 23 days old in Fort Wayne, IN, as part of the Midwest Peregrine project, and named “Talon.” 


Malar was admitted to The Raptor Center’s clinic with a fractured right metacarpal (bones/digits similar to fingers).  He was also depressed and dehydrated. 

He received his name due to the distinctive black markings on his face called malar stripes. Kestrels also have small, black marks at the edge of the nape to suggest “eye-spots”.  These are the smallest of North America’s falcons.


Sienna came to The Raptor Center after she was found in a field near Wabasha, MN, unable to fly.  When admitted, she had a clean, healed, amputation of the outer wing digit, and not capable of sustained flight.  She was also very tolerant of humans, which might indicate that she had been held in captivity for an extended period of time before admission. 


Lois is one of The Raptor Center’s imprinted great horned owls.

At the end of April 2001, a young owl was found and could not be replaced in its nest. After a month, she was brought to the Raptor Center and admitted as a possible imprint.

After being evaluated by the veterinarians at The Raptor Center, it was determined that she had been imprinted, and thus could not be released back into the wild. After being evaluated for several weeks, she was placed into The Raptor Center’s education department.


Whisper’s story is unique within The Raptor Center’s education department. Whisper hatched in St. Louis as part of a barn owl breeding program. Many of the barn owls at the facility were bred for reintroduction programs to combat barn owl population decline, but Whisper was slated to become an education raptor.

Whisper is an example of a bird that was purposefully imprinted. Barn owls have been directly affected by habitat loss. It was critical to have her as a staff member to help promote the messages of stewardship, conservation, and civic action on behalf of wild barn owls.


Strix was found in southwestern Minnesota along a roadside in early 2010. The bird was admitted into The Raptor Center’s clinic with a small corneal abrasion on the left eye, and the right eye had a torn retina. The bird’s right scapula was also fractured. Though Strix recovered vision in the left eye, the right did not recover and he is permanently non-sighted in that eye.

The name Strix is from the Latin name for this species, Strix varia.


On February 17, 1992, a great horned owl was brought to The Raptor Center with multiple wing injuries. She was found along the side of the road in Deer River, Minnesota, and it is thought that she may have been hit by a vehicle.

After rehabilitation, it was determined that her injuries impaired her flight too greatly for her to succeed in the wild. She was placed in The Raptor Center’s education department.