BOISE, Idaho — Though the World Center for Birds of Prey has been closed to the public since March, the staff has been hard at work taking care of endangered birds--most recently adding 26 California Condors to the center, escaping the dangerous smoke and flames.
Now, it's open back up to the public.
"It's been since the middle of March that we've been closed, and I know a lot of the staff and even the birds thrive on interaction with people, so to have people here again is a really heartwarming thing," said director Tate Mason.
The Center is back open and adjusting accordingly. Every year, Birds of Prey puts on Fall Flights, where hundreds gather to watch birds fly out in the open. That's not happening this year, so Raptors in the Round takes over instead.
"Smaller presentations for smaller groups, a very intimate presentation, where everybody is in the front row and can ask questions and be part of the experience," said Mason.
An experience enjoyed by 20 people at a time; Lucas Fraser and his mother enjoyed the first Round.
"it's so cool to be able to see them just fly free like that," said Fraser.
"I kept checking every day are they open, are they open, and I got lucky," said Williamson.
Fall Flights aren't the only significant change. Conservation efforts over the past few months had to adjust, too.
"There are essential projects that are going on, but there's also some fieldwork that we're also just not able to do," said Mason. "We're not able to send people to different countries in order to get these done."
The Peregrine Fund works on its goal of having a raptor biologist native to every country in the world.
"So they're inside that country, carrying on the mission of report conservation whether our biologists that are based in Boise can be there or not," said Mason.
The changes have been a hit so far, and the public is excited to be one with nature once again.
"It's great every time you come," said Williamson.
Three times a week, Thursday through Sunday, you can catch Raptors in the Round. Each show is limited to 20 people, so be sure to reserve your spot online.