Our friend Laurin Huse, the Rehabilitation Director at Cascades Raptor Center, arrived at King Estate Winery on a breezy but sunny day with four boxes. Each box contained a rehabilitated 4-month-old barn owl that came to the Cascades Raptor Center as an orphan. Some baby birds were only days old when they arrived at the center. Once they arrived at CRC the birds were paired with an adult owl foster mom who taught them everything they needed to know to survive in the wild. When they proved they can survive in the wild by demonstrating their ability to catch live prey in a specialized hunting enclosure, these young owls got the opportunity to return to the wild.
The young owls are placed in “owl boxes,” in trees around the King Estate property. The door is covered in an effort to acclimate the youngsters to their new surroundings. After a couple of hours, the door cover is removed, allowing the owls to venture out and start their new lives.
King Estate Winery has a unique partnership with the Cascades Raptor Center. The center loves releasing their birds of prey at King Estate because our organic estate is a safe, healthy environment for raptors to thrive in. King Estate likes the benefit of having these natural pest-controllers scouring the vineyard for pesky rodents that disrupt roots and eat grapes. The sight of these majestic birds perched atop trees and gliding through the sky isn’t too bad either.