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 300 birds each year that have been injured or orphaned, primarily from western Iowa.

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Education

SOAR provides educational programs with non-releasable birds of prey through out Iowa., based on your educational needs and goals.

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Research

Data collected helps with ongoing research to improve rehab techniques, prevent future mortality, and to detect threats to wildlife populations.

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teenage barred owls

Growing owls

The baby owl population is growing – figuratively and literally! Hatch-year 2021 owls are still being admitted. Earlier hatch-year owl admits are growing and needing more space. These “teenage” barred owls are just starting to take short flights and will be moved to a larger flight area soon.   These hatch-year 2021 screech owls were

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barred owl

Barreds released

Two adult barred owls were released on 31 May 2021. Birds are released back in to appropriate habitat for that species. Barred owl habitat is river bottom timber. Barred owls will move along the river corridor to find an open spot to claim.  

HY21 red-tailed hawk

Babies

Hatch-year 2021 (HY21) great horned and barred owls continue to be admitted. The first HY21 red-tailed hawk has also been admitted. Yes, it is always best if the raptor parent(s) raise their young. Sometimes intervention is the best course of action when the nest or nest cavity cannot be located, adults are not present, or

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young barred owl

Sometimes young birds do need help

Yes, it is always best if the raptor parent(s) raise their young. Knowing when to intervene is difficult. Many patients admitted in the spring and even into the summer are still considered nestlings (can also be called hatchlings) and they should still be in their nest but for unknown reason(s) are not. Below are terms

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L&D 10 eagle

L&D 10 Bald Eagle Release

In mid-December, Lock &  Dam 10 (Guttenberg, IA) staff alerted the Federal Warden of an injured bald eagle. The warden rescued and met up with Wildthunder for immediate care and then transfer to SOAR. This bald eagle was in rough shape with a fractured left femur, a significant wound in her left wingpit, and a

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barred owl

Happy barred owl

This barred owl was admitted mid-January 2021 from Marion County. A concerned citizen picked this owl up south of Knoxville on Iowa 5 in the evening and took to a SOAR volunteer the next day. The owl had broken right carpals (bones toward the tips of the wing). Owl was transported to some nice forested

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Decorah

Decorah Turns Seven

SOAR ambassador bald eagle Decorah is another year older! Decorah (FKA D20) hatched on 7 April 2014 in the famous Decorah Bald Eagle nest at the Decorah Trout Hatchery. Decorah is now seven years old!   The video here is from December 2020. You can see his left side tail feathers still have black on

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adult bald eagle

By the numbers

While 2020 is thankfully in the rear-view, SOAR is not quite done collecting bald eagle data for 2020. There are still what are termed active or pending bald eagle admits from last year. In 2020, SOAR admitted 77 bald eagles from across Iowa. Even though 12 bald eagles are still actively in rehab, most all

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