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TRAC Founders Entertain, Educate Audience with Raptor Show

Posted by kinchendavid on November 5, 2006

By David M. Kinchen
Editor, Huntington News Network

Sandstone, WV – A capacity audience in the auditorium of the National Park Services Sandstone Visitor Center met six West Virginia raptor birds in an entertaining and educational program by the Three Rivers Avian Center (TRAC) here Saturday, Nov. 4, 2006.

TRAC’s Wendy and Ron Perrone showed two species of owls, an eagle, a falcon, a kestrel and a hawk to a family audience in the facility about 10 miles north of Hinton on I-64.

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The Perrones, who founded the Brooks, WV-based rehabilitative and veterinary care facility for wild non-game birds 16 years ago, alternated showing Perry the peregrine falcon, Spirit the golden eagle, Twister the barn owl, Hoolie the great horned owl, Apex the American kestrel and Nick the red-tailed hawk to an appreciative audience.

Many in the audience asked questions after each bird was displayed and plenty of photographs were taken. The six raptors displayed were rescued by a wide variety of people. Wendy Perrone, displaying Spirit, said the golden eagle – who has a seven-foot wingspan – was spotted alongside a Greenbrier County road by a five-year-old boy, who asked his father to stop the car. The young eagle’s life was spared and he’s now four years old; he’ll live another 46 years.

Thanks to facilities like TRAC, endangered species of wild raptors are returning to West Virginia and the nation. Many of the thousands of birds rescued by the facility have been returned to the wild; others serve as mothers and fathers for recuperating birds. Ron Perrone, answering a question about the red-tailed hawk, said the much publicized “pale male” hawk living in New York City is indeed the same species as Nick, a female who was found in Nicholas County, WV.

For more information about the 102-acre Summers County-based wildlife center, check out the TRAC web site: http://www.tracwv.org.


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