AN OWL sanctuary in Harlington may be forced to close through lack of funds.
The Heathrow Owl Rescue centre, in High Street, Harlington, is seven years old, but with mounting running costs and donations drying up, its future is uncertain, says owlkeeper Terry Travis.
“Like any charity, we are going through tough times at the moment.
“We took in a bird two weeks ago with a sore foot.
“He’s not sick, but he could die as a result of the injury, and I have already paid £800 in vet bills.
“Last year, I paid £4,000 in vet bills, on top of the rent for the yard, and petrol to travel to and from the events we rely on. It is a vicious circle.
“A lot of the time, I just have to bite the bullet and pay out of my own pocket, but it is at crisis point and I don’t know how much longer I can keep it going.”
The sanctuary takes in unwanted and mistreated owls that are captive bred, working closely with the police and other agencies.
One is Ice, a six-year-old European eagle owl who had been locked in a kitchen cupboard for nearly two years. When he was found, he was sitting on cocaine and nearly £30,000 in cash.
The centre was refurbished earlier this year with new aviaries and fences. There are eight other owl centres like it in the UK, which are independent but pool their resources.
n Can you help? Call Terry on 07902 210 436, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.