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Rise Raptor Eagle Project

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Rise Raptor Project

Rise Raptor Project, Inc. in Hunstville, Alabama has a mission to "inspire the public to embrace principles of good stewardship, engage in scientific discovery, and be immersed in the riches of history and culture, by connecting with the most powerful birds in the world." 

Curt Cearley, founder of the Rise Raptor Project, has worked with birds of prey for 24 years. Over the past few years, Curt has worked to bring a rare White-Tailed Eagle, オジロワシ (Ojirowashi) all the way from Japan to Huntsville, Alabama. This Eagle will serve as an ambassador for Japan and the Institute for Raptor Biomedicine Japan (IRBJ). 

More information about the Rise Raptor Project may be found at


"This work is not really about me and an eagle. It is about connecting our two countries. It is also about Japanese relationships we have built, and for those yet to be made. She will be an ambassador of Japan, and IRBJ. In being so, she will promote the protection of the environment and all of its living things. She will remind us that together, symbiosis between humans and nature is possible. I'll be honored to be her assistant."  - Curt Cearley


In 2017, Mr. and Mrs. Kozo Matsuda from Huntsville Japan visited the Institute for Raptor Biomedicine Japan on behalf of Curt and the Rise Raptor Project. 

After several years of hard work, Curt Cearley and his Japanese colleagues are in the final stages of approval from the Japan Ministry of Environment and the Japan Ministry of Economics, Trade and Industry. They have been awarded a permit for a "Convention on International in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna" - CITES / Wild Bird Conservation Act Permit issued by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, a permit governed on the international trade of endangered species. 

Rise Raptor Project has also received a $10,000 grant award for the new eagle's facility in Huntsville, awarded by the Alabama Mountains, Rivers, and Valleys RC&D Council.

Pictured (left to right) Kozo Matsuda, Curt Cearley, Hon. Consul General Takashi Shinozuka, Rebekka Teranobu, and Tomoyo Tanno at the Consulate General of Japan in Atlanta


View this YouTube video from Hiromitsu Numata, Director of Hokkaido Television Broadcasting in Sapporo, Japan. The video introduces Dr. Keisuke Saito, President of the Institute for Raptor Biomedicine in Japan, and his background.

This video is available in Japanese. Below are some additional videos featuring Dr. Keisuke Saito and his staff at IRBJ.

The following video (right) from HTB shows an in-studio interview with Dr. Saito, Dr. Watanabe, and Chibi - their education Blakiston's Fish Owl (an endangered species on Hokkaido).

The video introduces behind the scenes work for education and field conservation of this owl.  The Blakiston's Fish owl is closely related to the Eurasian Eagle Owl (see Maximus at the Rise Raptor Center).


Show your support:

Rise Raptor Project is currently seeking sponsors and support for the eagle's transport from Japan to Alabama. The eagle will be handled by a company in Yokohama, Japan specializing in Animal Transportation, with all associated carrier links adhering to the "International Pet and Animal Transportation Association" (IPATA), an international organization that adheres to safe standards for the transport of animals. All animals stay at a USDA quarantine facility. 

For information about sponsorship opportunities for this unique project, please contact Curt Cearley and Rise Raptor Project at

Contact Us

+1 (205) 703-0960


2081 Columbiana Rd #10

Vestavia Hills, AL 35216

Copyright (c) 2019 Japan-America Society of Alabama

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