My family and other animals

Trip Start May 25, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of United Kingdom  ,
Monday, August 29, 2005

'Shall we do something today?'

"Well it is a Bank Holiday!"

'How about Gentleshaw Bird Sanctuary?'

"Why not. Dad get your coat, we're going out!"

A family outing!


Gentleshaw Bird Sanctuary is a small place fairly near our home. It is the only hope for a lot of the birds who end up there. Magnificent birds of prey, cut down in their prime by brutal and uncaring owners.

So it is always with a sense of relief that you see healthy healing birds. Although many cannot be released back into the wild - their injuries having been too serious to prevent the permanent disabilities - they seem happy and integrated.

Looking deep into the stares of the owls and eagles I wondered what they had seen?

As we wandered through the cages and plinths used to give the birds their tethered freedom, calls rang out for attention. 'Squark. Look at me! Talk to me!'

'Don't listen to him', said one of the staff, 'He's just a big show off, aren't you Terry?'


There was definitely a connection.

As the harriers and kestrels demonstrated their flying I noticed a small troop of monkeys in the corner. Patiently they groomed each other. Had they seen this performance too many times?

But Terry wasn't playing today. No more flying please! Terry decided he wanted to walk, and padded his thick talons through the green grass towards the owner.

'He thinks I'm his mum!' she said, smiling and shaking her head. 'Want a lift?'

The owl stood and waited as she bent down. He hopped onto her leathered hand and seemed to snuggle up to her company.

It's such a pity that so many beautiful birds, animals and reptiles end up at Gentleshaw, but at least they get treatment and a happy home.

Should you happen to be in the area, it's worth a visit and they sell plants and ice-cream toooowit-tooowoooo!
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