Knock me down with a wedgie feather!

Late 2017, I became a very proud Churchill Fellow.

The late and truly amazing Dr Peter Spitzer, himself a Churchill Fellow, had encouraged me for years to apply for the Fellowship. Every year or every time I’d visit him he’d say “Peg ! Fellowship applications have opened, what are you doing about it this year !?”

It deeply saddens me that I left it too late for us to enjoy the moment together when I received the good news. During my acceptance speech at the regal function at Parliament House, I was happy to be able to take a moment to acknowledge and recognise Peter’s support and friendship.

My fellowship has allowed me to travel abroad with my project aim to advance and exchange our knowledge of Australian Raptor rehabilitation and release techniques.


I am very aware of the honour bestowed on me and the responsibility that I have been given. You can read and download my Fellowship report here. My goal is to work with OEH using my knowledge from the best centres overseas and incorporating that knowledge and experience into our standards and training.

Peggy McDonald

Dr Peter Spitzer was a physician, educator, researcher, innovator, performer, and co-founder and medical director of the Humour Foundation and the Australian Clown Doctor program. The "art of medicine" was to become the guiding philosophy for the rest of Peter’s life as he sought a holistic approach to caring and healing.

Higher Ground Raptor Centre is an Australian bird of prey rehabilitation, release and education facility conceived, built and managed by licensed carer Peggy McDonald CF

We are now forming a new not-for-profit company to further grow our work in raptor care, rehabilitation and conservation called Higher Ground Raptor Centre Ltd ABN 78 644 738 769. We are still in the process of seeking all our registrations. In the meantime, please continue to donate to support us on our donate page through WRSC.


In 2017 Peggy became a Churchill Fellowship recipient "to advance and exchange our knowledge of Australian raptor rehabilitation and release techniques". Since then, Peggy has travelled to the USA, Canada, Alaska, Abu Dhabi and South Africa and is currently writing her report - watch this space!

Higher Ground Raptor Centre relies entirely on the good grace and generosity of donations and sponsorship to keep the facility running.



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For all the comings and goings of Raptor rehab at Higher Ground Raptor Centre you can go to: