Ingles Open Road: Carolina Avian Research and Education
I’m Chris Bainbridge, and I love the Carolinas. This is an amazing place to find adventure in all shapes and sizes – even in our changing world. Ingles sent me on a mission to bring you the very best of what our beautiful home has to offer – food, fun, nature, music, and more… all affordable, and all out of the ordinary. This is The Ingles Open Road.
Today, we’re bringing you an episode that’s totally for the birds. That’s because we’re here – at Carolina Avian Research and Education. This Fletcher, North Carolina bird sanctuary is a great place to learn about and experience our fine feathered friends from people who really care.
Carolina Avian Research and Education – or, CARE for short – was founded by Leean Shearouse, whose talents and passions include horticulture in addition to providing sanctuary to these amazing birds.
Here you’ll find birds from every continent except Antarctica. They are stunningly beautiful. And while the saying goes that birds of a feather flock together, this global mish-mash of winged beauties all get along just fine.
That’s one of the real lessons guests can take away here at CARE. These birds natively hail from areas thousands of miles away from each other in tons of different countries. But here at this lovely sanctuary in Fletcher, they all get along just fine.
And the lessons continue here with classes on a general tour of the operation, and specific deep-dives into species that might strike your curiosity. And there are a lot of them.
There are the beautiful tropical birds, incredible waterfowl and even chickens.
Then there are the raptors. Here we have one-eyed Jack, the Harris’s Hawk. And this is Hooper, the smallest falcon in the US. And while he and his friends here might be little, you’ll find they make a big impact when you come visit.
The beauty of creation is on full display here. Bright colors, unique birdsongs, and playful behavior are all complemented by the beautiful campus itself. It’s gorgeous here – probably what you’d expect when the founder was awarded a prestigious medal from the Royal Horticultural Society in London.
You can actually take gardening classes here too – a perfect weekend activity as we roll into some beautiful spring weather.
So, whether you come for the birds, the flowers, the classes, or a little bit of all of it, know that your reasonable price for admission and lessons goes a long way to helping CARE’s amazing inhabitants.
Plan your visit online at CAREBird.org. And fly on over to Fletcher for a day to remember. Your weekend is waiting on the Ingles Open Road.