Recapping Raptorama


Most people don’t realize it but raptors (birds of prey) migrate in good numbers along the Rockaway peninsula this time of year. On Sunday, October 17, more than 120 people attended the popular annual Raptorama Festival at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge.

 Bobby Horvath, a fireman who rescues and rehabilitates raptors and other wildlife, brought 20 disabled raptors to show them ‘up close and personal’ to the delight of children (of all ages) in the crowd. Attending birds included a Bald Eagle, Golden Eagle, Peregrine Falcon, Barn Owl, Kestrel, and Augie, the very tame and beautiful Eurasian Eagle Owl. Volunteers Dennis Guiney and Don Riepe were on hand to talk to people about each raptor’s biology and behavior.

This special program was sponsored by NYC Audubon, Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy, National Park Service, and the American Littoral Society. The next special wildlife program at the refuge will be a ‘Winter Waterfowl Workshop’ on Saturday, November 20 at 10 a.m. For more information and reservations call or text (917) 371-8577; e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Photos by Don Riepe and Theresa Racine.


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