Ferrets & Spooksl

After the hustle and bustle of the summer season, the Suffolk Owl Sanctuary settles down to a more peaceful phase. The flying display birds rest their wings for a few months, enjoying a period of well earned relaxation and the falconers don their jackets and gum boots against the wintry weather, tackling the many areas of the Sanctuary that need a little TLC after the busy summer.

One of the first jobs to be undertaken was the erection of a new ferret hut.  The old one was not only looking a little worn but, given that we’re hoping to expand the colony, it seemed a good time to give them a more palatial setting.

Ferrets are supreme escape artists, so lots of thought was put in to exactly what materials would be needed to keep them safe and secure.  They also love to play, so the new hut comes complete with large playball with exciting holes to explore, drainpipes to run in and out of and a long flexipipe to chase each other through.  And, (something I learnt only just recently) you’ll never guess what ferrets like above all else for those snoozy moments – a hammock!  Lucky ferrets - I’m thinking about moving in myself!

Fundraising Hallowe’en Hoot at the Suffolk Owl Sanctuary

Spooky Tooth & Magic Merlin - two of the guests at our Hallow'een Fundraiser

Although it’s a much quieter time visitor wise, there are one or two highlights, when the Centre briefly springs to life once more in fundraising mode to sustain us through the winter months – Hallowe’en being one of them.  This year, we thought we would go the whole hoot and make a real day of it.  All half term week we ran our tantalising pumpkin trail, with all sorts of hallowe’eny facts scattered around the Sanctuary and prizes for everyone who could answer all the quiz questions.

The 31st October itself dawned grey, but was dry and warm, ideal weather for a special Hallowe’en flying display.   As well as the pumpkin trail, the falconers had hidden bats and spiders all over the Sanctuary for the kids to hunt, with stacks of prizes to be won.  The flying display was, as always, a spectacular event, where Nessa the Red Kite, Becky the Lanner Falcon and Marge the Harris Hawk all showed off their aerial prowess.  A very special extra, was the novice display of one of the Sanctuary’s newest residents – Cecil the Spectacled Owl - there’ll be more about his first flight on our next blog.

As a finishing touch, after the flying display, General Manager Andy had the tricky task of judging the Suffolk Owl Sanctuary's fearsome fancy dress competition.  It was a tough call to choose between all the wizards, witches, skeletons and zombies and a rather appealing pumpkin, but finally the winners were selected and very scary they were too!  The following day, we received a super letter from one of the winners thanking us for his prize.  All in all an excellent day, thoroughly enjoyed by all.