Saving Our Avian Resources, SOAR is a 501(c)(3) organization established in 1999 dedicated to saving our avian resources through raptor rehabilitation, education, and research. SOAR maintains all necessary US Fish & Wildlife Service and Iowa DNR permits to provide the rehabilitation and education.

Rehab & Release

SOAR provides care for well over 200 birds each year that have been injured or orphaned, primarily from western Iowa. Most injuries are the result of human activities: collisions with cars, windows, power lines, fences, mowers, and effects from pesticides. Other injuries occur from storm damage causing nests to fall or birds to be blown into immovable objects.

With every rehabilitated bird, the key to a release site is appropriate habitat for that bird! We want to give these birds every chance at continued success, so we will not release right before a winter storm or during one of Iowa's blazing hot spells. Most releases are subdued and low-key.

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Education

SOAR's goal is to return all birds to the wild. However, once healed, not all birds are able to survive in the wild and be released because of limitations in their vision or ability to fly. These birds may become part of the 'education ambassador team' here at SOAR.

SOAR provides educational programs featuring their non-releasable birds of prey throughout Iowa thanks to our network of experienced environmental educators. Live bird presentations are effective educational tools that make lasting impressions on any audience.

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Research

As SOAR works to rehabilitate injured and sick birds, data is collected that helps with ongoing research and management practices. Conducting research on patients helps: to prevent future mortality, improve rehabilitation techniques, and can help wildlife biologists identify otherwise hard to detect threats to wildlife populations.

Current research includes collecting data on all eagle admits. Data includes reason for admission, injuries, a blood or liver lead level, an x-ray, and final status.

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Absolutely maddening!

In just over two months time, six bald eagles have been admitted to SOAR. One juvenile female and one adult were DOA (dead on arrival), the adult just last evening and as of right now, unsure of gender. The other four died in our care from the effects of extremely high blood lead levels. Four

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Ah… the weather?!

From where I sit, the weather is certainly feeling like January! Neighbors with livestock are taking this ‘warmer’ day to bed down livestock and make sure plenty of feed is ground, hay is available, and water tanks working as they should. That is no different than at SOAR. All 2015 patients being held over because

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Great time at 2016 Clinton Bald Eagle Day!

Thanks to Pam Steinhaus, Visitor Services Manager, US Fish and Wildlife Service and all the volunteers from the Stewards of the Upper Mississippi River Refuge for all their work to put on a spectacular event! The weather could have been less windy, but this is winter in the Midwest. We all spoke with several hunters

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Website has a new look

Welcome to the updated SOAR website! The biggest reason for the new design is this one is responsive to mobile devices. (I learned that the site is best viewed on my tablet if I hold it horizontal / landscape.) I did my best to keep the organization of information as close to the old site.

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New photos

These photos are from 23 November 2015. Terrie was at SOAR getting some eagle hours in and took these photos for us! Practice today was more out of the crate and sitting on the fist. Kay walked outside around the hawk building with Decorah on her fist. Thanks Terrie! Hope you all enjoy the day.

18 October 2015 – roomies

Ambassador-in-Training Decorah actually has 9 of 10 tail feathers that are growing… these feathers are not done growing, but this is by far the best we’ve seen them look! Port Louisa, the adult female eagle in for rehab on 21 Sept 2015, is in a 10×20 recovery room with Ambassador-in-Training Decorah on 10 October 2015.

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