Guided walking tours of the grounds are available at 10:30 am & 2:00 pm. Buying a ticket for a tour also gives you access to the grounds for the day (10 am to 5 pm) and to our free-flight demonstrations (11:30 am and 3 pm).
- Guided Tour: Enjoy a walking tour of the grounds with an experienced guide.
- Flight Demonstration: Watch as hawks, falcons, owls, eagles, and vultures soar above; learn about their hunting and flying techniques.
- Exhibit Area: The grounds are designed as a campus where visitors follow paths accentuated with aviaries housing more than 30 species of birds of prey.
- Owl Wood: Owls are universally recognized as some of the most compelling ambassadors for the natural world. The Countess Alicia Paolozzi Owl Wood spans two acres in which visitors experience owls from around the world in a refined & tranquil setting.
All proceeds from your admission go to support the Avian Conservation Center, a nonprofit 501 (c)3 organization.
What Is Not Included?
- What does my ticket include?
- Your ticket price includes a guided tour of the grounds at the time you specified (tours are offered on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 10:30 am and 2 pm). In addition to the tour, you also get access to the grounds for the whole day (10 am to 5 pm) so you can check in anytime no matter what time your tour is! And lastly, you may also attend either or both of our flight demonstrations, which are held at 11:30 am and 3 pm.
- What is The Center for Birds of Prey?
- Under the umbrella of the nonprofit Avian Conservation Center, the Center for Birds of Prey and the Avian Medical and Oiled Bird Treatment Facility near Charleston, S.C., identify and address vital environmental issues through avian medicine, educational outreach and conservation initiatives. Situated on a 152-acre campus adjacent to the Cape Romain Wildlife Refuge and Francis Marion National Forest, the Avian Conservation Center and the Center for Birds of Prey combine medical care for injured birds, environmental education and scientific research. Thoughtfully designed display aviaries, two flight demonstration fields and a planned education, science and conservation building offer the public a chance to experience birds of prey in a natural setting and to better understand avian science and environmental conservation.
- What will visitors see at the Center for Birds of Prey?
- At the center, educators will lead visitors in an exploration of some of the many birds of prey species on display. Through displays and interaction with the staff, visitors have the opportunity to learn about various aspects of the birds’ natural history and the conservation challenges facing individual species. One of the most interesting aspects of the visitor experience is flight demonstrations. Visitors watch as bald eagles, falcons, owls and various other trained birds of prey demonstrate their stunning flight characteristics and adaptations.
- How do admission fees support the Avian Conservation Center?
- The center is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization supported solely through admissions, memberships, grants and contributions. Contributions provide crucial operational support for educational, medical, conservation and research initiatives.
- Where is the Center for Birds of Prey located?
- The Center for Birds of Prey is located along Highway 17N in the town of Awendaw, S.C., within a 20 minute drive from Charleston, approximately 12 miles from Mt. Pleasant and 15 miles from downtown Charleston. The temporary entrance gate is on Seewee Road, just off of Highway 17. Further details will be provided upon purchasing tickets.
- Who operates the Center for Birds of Prey?
- The Center for Birds of Prey operates under the umbrella of the Avian Conservation Center, a non-profit 501(c)3 organization. The newly opened Avian Medical and Oiled Bird Treatment Facility was funded by a $1.8 million grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the S.C. Department of Natural Resources.
- How long should one allow for a visit?
- Visitors are encouraged to allow a minimum of two hours for a visit.
- Can visitors photograph the birds?
- Yes. Guests are encouraged to bring cameras.
- Where do visitors park? Is there a parking fee?
- Free parking is available on campus in the designated “Visitor Parking” area.
- Are visitors allowed to handle the birds?
- Only staff members of the center are able to handle the birds as they have received extensive training. Due to federal regulations, the safety of the birds, and the health and safety of guests, visitors are not permitted to handle the birds.
- Are there any restaurants nearby?
- Two options are available within one-half mile of the center. The Seewee Restaurant serves full course meals and/or light snacks. Deli sandwiches are available at the Seewee Outpost. The nearby towns of Mt. Pleasant and McClellanville offer a wide variety of dining experiences within minutes of the center.
- Are refreshments available?
- Long-range plans include food service; however, that facility is not available at this time. Bottled water is available for purchase on-site, and nearby stores offer a variety of refreshments.
- Are you handicapped accessible?
- Yes, our facility is handicapped accessible, including restrooms.
- Are pets allowed on the grounds?
- With the exception of service dogs for guests with disabilities, pets are not permitted on the campus to ensure the safety of the birds, as well as the health and safety of guests.
- What if it rains?
- The Center for Birds of Prey is an open-air facility. Except in the case of severe storms, we remain open to the public. In the event we must close the facility on the day of your visit, we will honor your tickets for 12 months following the originally scheduled visit date. Plans for a future Education/Science/Conservation Building will include indoor program space. At this time, however, all activities are conducted outdoors.
- Can visitors ride bicycles on the campus?
- Bicycles can be potentially stressful for captive birds. The center has been designed as a walking experience and, as such, does not incorporate paths for biking.
- Is smoking allowed?
- In keeping with the center’s intent to provide a safe and healthful environment, smoking is prohibited throughout buildings and grounds.
- When is the center open?
- The center is open to the public on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays year-round. Private group arrangements on Tuesdays and Wednesdays are possible - if interested, please contact us via the "Contact BirdsofPrey" link.
- Can I attend both tours if I want?
- Your ticket gives you access to the tour time that you chose. However, if there is still room on the other tour of the day, you are welcome to attend that one as well if you'd like. Please ask the guide about availability.
- Can I make a donation?
- Sure - we of course more than appreciate any donations that our patrons are able to make. Please click on the "Contact BirdsofPrey" link to inquire about making a donation to the center.
- Do I need to pay tax?
- No, you do not have to pay tax.
- Can I bring my own food/drink into the center?
- We have water to purchase at the guest information center, and there are several good local restaurants nearby. For the health and safety of our birds, we ask that you refrain from bringing outside food and drink into the center.
- Are there places to sit and rest inside the center?
- Yes, we have several areas with benches. Many of these benches also offer views of our birds. The flight demonstrations also have seating available.
- Do I have to book in advance? Can I pay cash, check or credit at the entrance?
- We recommend that you book in advance to guarantee your preferred tour time and date. We do accept walk-up guests, as space permits. We accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover, cash and check at the entrance.
- If I buy a ticket, do I have to attend the tour, or can I skip it and just visit the grounds on my own?
- If you buy a ticket for a tour, it also includes admission to the grounds for that day, as well as the flight demonstrations. You are not required to attend the tour.
- How long are the free-flight demonstrations?
- The flight demonstrations last approximately 45 minutes. You are welcome to attend all or part of them in our open-air amphitheater.
- Are strollers allowed in the center? Do I have to park mine at any point or can I take it everywhere?
- Yes, strollers are allowed at the center. You are welcome to keep them with you throughout your visit.
- Are any discounts available for larger groups?
- Yes, discounts are available for groups of 10 or more adults and will be applied automatically as long as all tickets are purchased at the same time. If you are interested in a private group outing to the center, please click on the "Contact BirdsofPrey" link to learn more about how to arrange your trip.
- Am I expected to tip my tour guide?
- Tour guides are employees of the center and are allowed to accept tips. If you enjoyed your tour, we encourage you to make a tax-deductible gift to the center.
- Will there be any souvenirs available for sale? Is there a gift shop?
- Yes, we have a variety of items for sale on-site at the center. Examples include t-shirts, decals, note cards, and jewelry.
- Do I get a discounted rate if I'm an active military member? What about my guests?
- The center hosts special days for the military throughout the year. Please click on the "Contact BirdsofPrey" link to be added to our mailing list for advance notice of such special events.
- Do you have any special events I could attend?
- Yes, the Center for Birds of Prey hosts special events throughout the year. Please click on the "Contact BirdsofPrey" link to inquire about joining our mailing list and receiving information on future special events like this one!
- Are gift certificates for the center's tours available?
- Yes, gift certificates are available. Please click on the "Contact BirdsofPrey" link to inquire about purchasing gift certificates.
- Non-refundable, cannot be rescheduled.
- Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded and cannot be rescheduled because your space is being guaranteed at the event.
- The center may close in severe weather.
- The center usually stays open in light rain and other moderate weather conditions, but the seller may close the center in the event of severe or unsafe weather conditions. If the center closes, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule tickets (subject to availability) or receive credit for a future event within 12 months of the original tour date.
- Your tour ticket gives you access to the grounds for the day.
- In addition to your scheduled tour, your ticket also gives you access to the grounds for the day (open from 10 am to 5 pm) as well as access to our free-flight demonstrations at 11:30 am and 3 pm.
The Center for Birds of Prey
The organization operates a professional avian medical clinic for injured birds of prey and some shorebird species and participates in and supports international conservation issues. It offers on-site and outreach educational programs to students and adults, and conducts relevant field and laboratory research studies.
The organization is a first line responder for oiled birds in the event of a contaminant spill, and serves as a primary resource for creating ongoing awareness of the ecological impacts of a spill and proactive measures available to reduce the likelihood of such an event.