WESTON, Conn. (CBSNewYork) – In the wooded hills of Connecticut you’ll find a bird sanctuary however, the patients being rehabilitated there aren’t your average birds: they’re raptors.
Raptors, also known as birds of prey, include several meat-eating birds like eagles, falcons, hawks, and owls. Christine Peyreigne runs a non-profit called “Christine’s Critters,” which takes care of injured birds of prey who fall victim to the dangers of man in the wild.
“She has no eyesight in this eye. So we’re hoping that it regains,” Peyreigne told CBS2’s Steve Overmyer while introducing him to a red tail hawk who was hit by a car and suffered an eye injury.
“Certain birds have a connection with me but it’s not magical or spiritual,” the sanctuary owner added. “It’s more so that a bird is so comfortable with me it views me as one of its own. ‘I’m not afraid of her. She’s just some big giant tree that sometimes has food for me.’”
Christine’s Critters will take days and sometimes weeks to rehabilitate injured raptors before releasing them back into the wild fully healthy. The ones who are too injured to defend themselves in the wild find a permanent home with Christine at the Weston facility.
“I’m really happy because it looks like she’s gonna make a full recovery and get to go back to the skies where she belongs,” Peyreigne said about an eagle suffering from lead poisoning that she saved from drowning in a river.
“It’s not always playing with baby owls and baby hawks. What draws me into it is that I’m able to make a difference.”
For more information of how to help Christine rehab more of these birds of prey, check out the sanctuary’s website here.