Owl Rescue Centre is a registered Non-profit company and permitted rehabilitation facility concerned with the well-being of all owl species in Southern Africa.
Owl Rescue Centre is dedicated to protect owls, rescue owls that are in danger and rehabilitate and care for owls that have been injured, are sick, poisoned or orphaned and then release them back into their natural environment using specifically researched release methods.
Owl Rescue Centre is involved in several conservation projects to decrease the high mortality rate of owl species.
Owl Rescue Centre was founded by Brendan Murray following a lifelong interest and passion for birds of prey. Brendan spent most of his young life observing and studying birds. He came to the realization a few years ago that owls specifically need help to protect them from becoming endangered, and so Owl Rescue Centre was born.
His wife, Danelle Murray, became involved in the cause shortly after as the Co-founder of the organization, to support him in his purpose. They now work as a team, along with a few committed staff and volunteers to achieve a goal in owl conservation.
Owl Rescue Centre’s vision is that through increased understanding of the owl's true character, the fears and misgivings that often surround peoples' perceptions of owls will be replaced by tolerance and respect for these unique birds.
“We follow a philosophy of minimal human interference to nature’s natural means. We nurture owls when they need us, but we allow them to stay wild and return to their natural habitat when they no longer require our assistance.”
Most owl species hunt and are active at night and are seldom observed by humans. Because of this nocturnal (night-time) existence, they are little known and often misunderstood, even though some owls live their entire lives in close proximity to man.
Brendan with a rescued Spotted Eagle Owl
The Owl Sanctuary
Owl Rescue Centre is based at Hartbeespoort in the North West Province of South Africa. The Centre takes in hundreds of owls every year through their rescue efforts. The owls are rehabilitated and when they can survive on their own in the wild, are released in The Sanctuary - a farm which is located within a twelve thousand hectare protected conservancy.
When Brendan and Danelle acquired the farm, their dream was to secure a sanctuary for the owls, where they would be protected and looked after, a piece of habitat that would always belong to them.
The Sanctuary is the only one of its kind in the world. Owls can be observed visiting the various feeding platforms around The Sanctuary, every single night. Many have taken up residency in the Owl Houses where they breed year after year.
My Dark Country tells the story of a family who dedicated their lives to saving owls. The author shares her experiences of growing up in South Africa and her family's exposure to and survival of violent crimes. Choosing a career in conservation has led her family to live on farms, having to work late at night and in unprotected rural areas, which has exposed them and left them vulnerable to attacks and robberies. The book gives an insightful perspective on modern society in a country that is plagued by poverty, haunted by its past and crippled by crime. It also provides the reader with a special look into the author’s life as a conservationist living with owls, whereby together with her husband, they make it their sole life’s mission to rescue and save all owl species.
“Saving owls gives my life a distinct purpose and meaning; I will always consider it a great privilege.”
Danelle Murray, My Dark Country Published by Arcanum Press www.arcanum-press.com
Available through Arcanum Press in
United Kingdom, America & Canada
Purchase a copy directly through Owl Rescue Centre by clicking on the button below (free courier delivery anywhere in SA):
Proceeds from the sales of My Dark Country help to fund
our veterinary bills.