This Valentine’s Day, You Can Watch a Raptor Eat a Rat Named After Your Ex
Valentine’s Day is a great time to celebrate your loved ones and make a meal out of candy hearts and chocolate. It’s also the perfect opportunity to watch a raptor gobble up a mouse named after your ex.
HawkWatch International is a Utah-based organization founded in 1986 that works to protect hawks and other birds of prey. Their efforts involve caring for rescued raptors that can no longer survive in the wild for one reason or another—like Calurus, a red-tailed hawk who can’t fly because of a poorly healed broken wing; and Artemis, a screech owl with eye damage from a car crash.
Normally, these “Raptor Ambassadors” eat unnamed prey. But this Valentine’s Day season, HWI’s handlers will feed them mice and rats that represent people who’ve done their past partners so very, very wrong. And while the enterprise is called “The One Rat Got Away,” there’s really no rule confining it to exes only—maybe you’d rather name a rat after your high school bully or a politician you can’t stand.
It’s $5 for each name. For $20, HWI will email you “photographic proof” that a raptor scarfed down your vermin; and for $45, they’ll send you a video of it actually happening. If you can make it to the HWI headquarters in Salt Lake City sometime this month, you can spring for a $150 visit to watch the feeding in person (though HWI notes that “there is always a chance our birds will not eat in front of you”).
All in all, it’s a pretty fun way to donate to a conservation cause. You can learn more and name your rodent here.