Realizing that there was a rapid decline in owl numbers and that owls had become one of the most common wildlife casualties brought into veterinary practices, Brendan and I decided ten years ago to focus all our efforts on conserving them. The organisation we founded, Owl Rescue Centre, now takes in more than a thousand owls every year through our rescue efforts. The owls are rehabilitated and when they can survive on their own in the wild, are released in the sanctuary – a farm which is located within a 12,000-hectare conservancy.
When we acquired the farm, now know as the Owl Sanctuary, we had a dream to secure a piece of protected habitat that would always belong to the owls. It would be a place where owls can be cared for and released within a safe environment.
We negotiated a Deed of Sale agreement with the owner in which we would pay the property off in installments of R 100 000 a month. We managed these payments for a few months, but the large amount became very demanding and harder as time went by. When we defaulted on our payments, we renegotiated a rental agreement which we are diligently paying each month. We continued to build the Sanctuary up with habitat enclosures, release enclosures and feeding platforms for the owls.
Our Landlord has now given us three months to raise the moneys to pay for the property. He informed us that he has a potential buyer and if we do not put an offer in, we may loose the property (and everything we have worked so hard to create) to another buyer who wants to use the property for pig farming.
Many owls have permanently settled on the property, are breeding in Owl Houses around the Sanctuary and owls that are finding it hard to cope due to injury are support fed in a controlled and protected area.
Please help us to save the Owl Sanctuary and realize our dream.