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Martin Scuffins
Martin ScuffinsDirector and Main Raptor Handler

Martin Scuffins has had a life-long passion for birds of prey and conservation. He was originally mentored in raptor rehabilitation, handling and training techniques under the guidance of local experts in the late 1980’s whilst operating a wildlife shelter. Martin also brings his scientific credentials to this business, having an extensive background in environmental science and wildlife research as well as a passion for wildlife art.

To further his skills in the demanding field of raptor handling, training and rehabilitation, Martin has travelled and studied widely, spending time at raptor centres and with handlers in the UK, Ireland and Dubai. Operating his shelter and handling these birds on a daily basis has given Martin extensive hands on experience with this group of birds. He has now become widely known for his work and has conducted training for numerous wildlife care groups. These include Wildlife Victoria, BADGAR wildlife rescue and Warrnambool Wildlife Group. Currently, he is writing a manual of raptor rehabilitation aimed at providing valuable reference material for wildlife shelters in Victoria.

Talia Barrett
Talia BarrettBusiness Manager and Educational Resources Developer

Talia Barrett has worked as an education practitioner for over 20 years. She was a teacher trainer in Thailand and Indonesia in the mid-1990’s and then, since moving to the Ballarat area with Martin, she has worked in the area of academic literacy in the tertiary education sector.

Her main role in the Leigh Valley Hawk and Owl Sanctuary is ensuring the smooth running of the administrative side of the business by overseeing the management of the sanctuary and its financial operations.  Talia’s other role is in curriculum design and development for the school incursions. She has developed self-contained units of work that schools can access for any year level to ensure that Martin’s displays are contextualised within key learning areas of the Australian National Curriculum. The aim is for the unit content to assist school students and the public alike to have access to interactive and diverse resources promoting engagement with and a deeper understanding of the natural environment and the specific issues that directly impact birds of prey.

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