Guinevere - Red-tailed Hawk
 
 

Making the world a better place for raptors through education and science

 

We are a nonprofit organization with 501(c)3 status. 

EIN: 82-0696138

In order to fulfill our mission and vision, we need funding!

We rely on donations to fund our programs. Please scroll through the website to learn about us and our vision. Also your tax-deductible donation will help us reach our goal of building a beautiful center with a state of the art medical facility that will provide medical assistance and rehabilitation to injured/sick raptors. Currently, the raptors of Northern Arizona have no place to receive help; therefore, most are euthanized or have to endure a long 3-hour trip down to the Phoenix area. Your donation will help change that! In addition, the Center will provide an opportunity for the public to enjoy, experience and learn about raptor species from all over the world.

Donate

Shopping for Raptors!!

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You can now help IRFC by just shopping! When shopping on Amazon, just choose IRFC as your charity to support...it is that easy and it does not cost you anything!  https://smile.amazon.com/ch/82-0696138

What We Do!

We offer a variety of educational programs, lectures, workshops, experiences and adventures. 

The donations for these programs will go toward furthering our mission and are tax deductible. 

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EDUCATION PROGRAMS

School programs pre-K to 12th grade

 We offer a variety of options…using PowerPoint and a live raptor on a glove

Education programs can be tailored to the wishes and objectives of the requesting school. All programs finish with a live raptor on the glove and an informal Q&A session. Upon request, raptor themed activities such as puzzles, quizzes, crafts, or coloring pages can be sent digitally. All of these programs can be adapted for university or adult lectures as well.

RAPTOR BIOLOGY – This program explores raptor anatomy using replica skeletal parts and photographs of different species to show the variances among raptor species based on their survival strategies used in the wild. Dissecting and examining feathers and raptor pellets is always a favorite way to demonstrate the unique biology of raptors.

RAPTORS AND PEOPLE – This program focuses on how humans impact raptors and discussing ways the students can help raptors in their everyday lives is an excellent way to develop good environmental stewardship.

WHERE RAPTORS LIVE – This program focuses on where raptors live and why all over the world. Topics covered are habitat characteristics and prey choices as well as hunting style used by various species based on prey, land cover and flight anatomy. A guided tour of species distribution and conservation status can be included if time permits.

FALCONRY-THE GENESIS OF RAPTOR CONSERVATION – This program encompasses the history of falconry and the rarely known fact that falconers pioneered the raptor conservation we know today. This is a great program for older students as well as adults that touch on a facet of topics such as biology, governmental policy, history and cultural heritage. A truly interdisciplinary approach to why we are fortunate enough to enjoy raptor species such as the Peregrine Falcon.

OUR DONATION STRUCTURE 

45mins/1 raptor – Base donation of $65 up to 40 students, over 40 students $8 per student.

60mins/2 raptors - Base donation of $80 up to 40 students, over 40 students $8 per student.

90mins/1 raptor - Base donation of $130 up to 40 students, over 40 students $8 per student

120 mins/ 2 raptors - Base donation of $160 up to 40 students, over 40 $8 per student

If outside the 25-mile radius of Flagstaff, .50 per mile for additional travel costs

These funds help offset the costs of caring for our birds and expenses associated with conducting programs. 

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PUBLIC EVENTS

Outreach and Corporate Events

Have a festival, outreach or corporate event you would like to make more interesting? Invite a raptor! Nothing inspires visitors more than seeing a live raptor up close.

Donation $250 for one bird for one hour; $50 for additional hour(s)

If outside the 25-mile radius of Flagstaff, .50 per mile for additional travel costs 

 

 

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RAPTOR and FALCONRY PROGRAMS

Falconry/Raptor Experiences

BASIC RAPTOR EXPERIENCE (1 hour) – This experience allows you to experience a free flying hawk up close all while learning about the natural history of their wild counterparts. 

A donation of $65 per person (limited to 6 participants and children must be at least 8 years old) If you do not wish to have a bird fly to your gloved hand but would like to watch the group, $20 per person.  There must be at least one full participant within your party and children must be 5-years-old or older. 

COMPREHENSIVE FALCONRY EXPERIENCE (2 hours) –

This is a hands-on learning experience using a free flying hawk. This is for those who would like a little more detail on the aspects of falconry. Learn a few basics about training a raptor to hunt cooperatively with a human.

A donation of $130 per person (limited to 6 participants and children must be at least 8 years old). If you do not wish to have a bird fly to your gloved hand but would like to watch the group, $30 per person.  There must be at least one full participant within your party and children must be 5-years-old or older. 

HUNTING EXPERIENCE (4 hours) - $200 per person (limited to 4 people and children must be over 12 years old)

Join us in the field to experience falconry while hunting in the fields of Northern Arizona.

(available late December 2017)

FALCONRY WORKSHOP (4 days)- $500 per person (limited to 5 people and must be at least 16 years old)

Learn captive raptor management and raptor husbandry including housing, diet and basic medical issues. Followed by falconry methods of training using operant conditioning and positive reinforcement, weight management and equipment making and instruction. Federal and State regulations will be covered.

*Please let us know if you are a Title I school or a nonprofit*

About Us

We are a non-profit organization that is devoted to the conservation and understanding of raptor species worldwide. Our mission is to make the world a better place for raptors through education and science. Our vision is to improve awareness and appreciation of raptors by providing a variety of educational programs to the public. We offer falconry experiences and hunting excursions using trained raptors in order for the public to not only enjoy these beautiful birds up close but to have a better understanding of the role in our ecosystem as an apex predator.

The ancient culture of Falconry has played a pioneering role in raptor conservation and the Center will conserve that heritage through ethical practices and education. We provide presentations about the history for Falconry and workshops for those who wish to explore the culture for themselves.

Our ultimate vision for the Center is to be specialty center devoted to raptor species from all over the world for the public to visit and enjoy. 

 

Michele Losee, MS – Executive Director

Raptor Ecologist and Master Falconer

Guinevere, my first Red-tailed Hawk

Guinevere, my first Red-tailed Hawk

Michele is a Master Falconer and a PhD Candidate at Antioch University New England with research focusing on Golden Eagle population dynamics for the entire state of Arizona. Additionally, she holds a BS in Biology and a MS in Environmental Policy and Management.

For the more than 15 years, she has been involved in raptor rehabilitation and public education with various organizations such as the Northern Arizona Audubon Society, National Zoo and the International Centre for Birds of Prey.

She is a member of many organizations such as Arizona Falconers’ Association, North American Falconers’ Association, Northern Arizona Audubon Society, the Raptor Research Foundation, and the International Association of Avian Trainers and Educators.

 

Trevor Hinckley - Birding Expert 

Doing what Trevor does, BIRDING! 

Doing what Trevor does, BIRDING! 

I grew up exploring the forests of southern Illinois, where the Pileated Woodpeckers and Prothonotary Warblers are common, and by the time I was fourteen-years-old birding had become my obsession.  It was this obsession that led me to earn two bachelor’s degrees in Zoology and Anthropology.  Through work and study, I was able to go birding throughout South and Central America that included an Eco lodge in the Brazilian Pantanal. In addition, I have gone birding extensively in Costa Rica, Panama, Ecuador, Chile, and Trinidad and Tobago.  In 2014, I came to Flagstaff for graduate school and started birding in the diverse and spectacular habitats of Northern Arizona just as obsessively as I had everywhere else.

Although I value my academic education, I have to admit that my greatest education was, and still is, in the field.  Over the last two decades I have worked extensively studying birds in the field by doing numerous surveys (point counts, area surveys, territory mapping, nest searching) for various organizations, assisting with bird banding, participating in dozens of Christmas Bird Counts and contributing to ebird.  In addition, I have planned and guided countless birding trips as well as taught numerous courses in basic birding.  As an avid birder as well as Picture Canyon Sanctuary steward and board member for Northern Arizona Audubon Society, I have become as knowledgeable with the birds of Northern Arizona as I did with the birds of southern Illinois (where I birded extensively for 16 years).  I believe that birding provides a unique view of the wonders of nature, whether one is a casual birder or an enthusiastic expert.  It is the reason that I enjoy leading trips in order for those who enjoy observing birds and learning more about them, whether they are just starting out or looking to add to an already extensive life list.            

 

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Jon Orona - President

Dana Green - Treasurer

Secretary - Diane Welch
Falconer and Educator

Diane with her female Red-tailed Hawk, Autumn and her hunting dog, Smitty

Diane with her female Red-tailed Hawk, Autumn and her hunting dog, Smitty

IRFC’s Youth Ambassador!

Danae with Finley

Danae with Finley

 

We cannot think of a better young person to champion our mission and inspire young people to care about raptors as well as lead the future generation of raptor conservationists. She is a leader beyond her years and we have no doubt she will carrying out the mission of making the world a better place for raptors with conviction.

According to Rena, Danae’s mother, “she has always loved and enjoyed birds and held that interest above all else.  She incorporates birds into just about everything from drawing, clay art, costumes, stories she writes, etc.  She aspires to be a falconer, ornithologist and rescuer. She has been studying hard and learning faster and harder than any 8-year-old.  She learns through playing factual trivia games, reading books, wonderful mentors and anywhere she can gain nuggets of knowledge.  She loves to share her knowledge with anyone who will lend an ear.”

Danae has shown a passion for raptors and strong interest in caring for them that can’t seem to be squashed. Her maturity and desire to learn is quite impressive. When she is old enough to start her falconry apprenticeship, which I’m sure will come no later than exactly ON her 12th birthday, it will be an honor for me (Michele) to sponsor her and witness her join the ranks of the very few female falconers.

Danae has already planned her first fundraiser for IRFC. She was the force behind our Hot Cocoa and Raptors event in Sedona, AZ. 

 

MEET CORAL!!

Coral as a juvenile. (2011)

Coral as a juvenile. (2011)

Coral is a 6-year-old, female Harris Hawk. She is captive bred and born in Gloucestershire UK. Yep, a native species from the Southwest US originally from Britain...weird indeed. She has traveled all over the United States since arriving in America, all the while educating and showing off to the public from New England to Northern Arizona. When not flying around the fields of Northern Arizona, she LOVES her doing her job educating the public about her wild counterparts. 

UPDATE: Once Finley and Kieran are trained in their new jobs, Coral will be somewhat retiring from public life. She will do some educational programs as needed. 

Coral hunting a big spider in the historic rock fences/walls in New Hampshire. (2014)

Coral hunting a big spider in the historic rock fences/walls in New Hampshire. (2014)

Coral's first hunt in Massachusetts (2014) She caught her New Year's Day bunny in this same field (2015)

Coral's first hunt in Massachusetts (2014) She caught her New Year's Day bunny in this same field (2015)

Coral flying in Northern Arizona! (2016) PHOTO: by Jackie Klieger

Coral flying in Northern Arizona! (2016)

PHOTO: by Jackie Klieger

Coral celebrating Red Rock State Park's 25th year. (2016) PHOTO: by Jackie Klieger

Coral celebrating Red Rock State Park's 25th year. (2016)

PHOTO: by Jackie Klieger

Enjoying the sun and 500+ children at City of Sedona's Celebration of Spring (2016)  PHOTO: by Jackie Klieger

Enjoying the sun and 500+ children at City of Sedona's Celebration of Spring (2016) 

PHOTO: by Jackie Klieger