By Shelby Seas, Seasonal Naturalist
This past month we welcomed six new residents to the Deer Haven Park Aviary! The new birds include Igor & Ichabod the turkey vultures, Henna & Artemis the red-shouldered hawks, and Bella & Apollo the red-tailed hawks. These birds all have various injuries that prevent them from being able to survive on their own in the wild, but they are all seasoned education ambassadors. They came to us from Ohio Nature Education in Johnstown, Ohio which is a non-profit organization that provides a permanent home for non-releasable wild animals. They have all settled in wonderfully and seem to love their new home.
Visitors can view the birds in the aviary during park hours, 8:00 am to 9:00 pm, between now and October 31. The birds will change quarterly throughout the year, giving visitors an opportunity to learn about different species of birds. If you would like more information about Ohio Nature Education and the work they do, visit ohionature.org. (Photos courtesy of Ohio Nature Education.)
Igor is a permanently injured turkey vulture. Despite the name, Igor is a female. She was found in the spring of 2001 wandering around the grounds of Denison University in Granville, Ohio. Upon further inspection, it was discovered that Igor had a detached retina in her left eye and an old, healed fracture in her left wing. Igor’s head is much redder than her housemate and her left eye is damaged.
Ichabod is a male turkey vulture who suffered eye and head trauma from an unknown injury. Ichabod sometimes tilts his head or wanders into the corners of his enclosure because of visual and neurological damage he sustained. While these behaviors may seem odd, they are typical for him, and he still manages to see well enough to hop up on the swing back home. He is not as brightly colored on the head and legs and the feathers on his left wing tend to look ruffled.
Henna is a female red-shouldered hawk that was found by an employee of the Licking Park District after being hit by a car in Licking County. Since Henna is a female, she is significantly larger and is normally louder than her housemate, but both are very vocal.
Artemis is a male red-shouldered hawk who came to Ohio Nature Education from a wildlife rehabilitation center in Lake County, Ohio where he was treated for unknown injuries. Artemis is much smaller and less vocal than Henna.
Bella is a female red-tailed hawk who was found around the John Glenn Columbus International Airport area with an unknown cause for her wing injury. An examination of the hawk revealed no apparent fractures, but she was thin and was having difficulty flying. Bella never improved her ability to fly and could not be released due to radial nerve damage in her left wing. Bella is much larger than Apollo.
Apollo is a male red-tailed hawk who was injured when his nest tree was cut down. His left eye is recessed, more sunken into his skull, and he is much smaller than Bella. Sometimes you might see Apollo do a flip when taking off from a perch. This is because his injuries have damaged his spatial perception and vision.