The term raptor refers to a bird such as an eagle, hawk, falcon or owl that hunts for its food. Also called birds of prey, raptors are characterized by a hooked beak, sharp talons and keen eyesight. Owls also possess exceptional hearing.
Raptors eat insects, rodents, rabbits, fish, snakes and even other birds. They help maintain the balance of nature by keeping these animals from overpopulating and contribute significantly in many other ways to the overall health of our ecosystems. The natural history of raptors is an important part of our heritage and “birding” has become a lucrative business that is good for our economy.
The diversity and beauty of raptors adds so much to our natural world. Since raptors are at the top of the food chain they are considered “environmental barometers.” When raptors are not surviving well in a habitat, it is a strong indication that something could be negatively affecting the environment upon which they depend. Those same negative factors can affect our lives in countless ways, too.
When you help save a bird of prey, you are helping to save the earth!
Strong grasping feet equipped with sharp talons. The feet are the primary weapons and protection.
A strong, curved, hooked upper beak with sharp edges.
Excellent eyesight and hearing. It is estimated that a raptors vision is at least eight times better than humans.