The Auburn University Southeastern Raptor Center’s annual online auctions for jesses and lures used by its eagles during gameday flights will begin this season with today’s first home football game against the Tulane Green Wave.
The auctions are a way for Auburn fans to obtain a one-of-a-kind piece of Auburn football history while also supporting the center’s mission of rehabilitation, education and conservation. To date, more than $40,000 has been raised to support the center.
Jesses are cuffs worn around the eagle’s ankles with straps to assist the handler in securely holding the raptor. The lure is used by the handler to entice the eagle to land at midfield and often has talon marks from use. Each one is handmade of leather, uniquely decorated by volunteers or staff of the Southeastern Raptor Center for each game and used only one time — during the Auburn eagle’s pre-game flight.
“Something a lot of people may not know is that when the eagles are circling on gamedays, they are really looking for us to show them that lure,” said Andrew Hopkins, assistant director of raptor training and education with the Southeastern Raptor Center, a division of the College of Veterinary Medicine. “As soon as it looks like the eagle is starting to lose interest, we will run out to midfield and show them the lure, and they will land on it for their food reward.”
Fans can check out photographs of the lures and jesses that will be auctioned off as well as place their bids on the raptor center’s website at auburn.edu/raptor. Each auction will open at the same time — 2:30 p.m. on Thursdays prior to every home game — and close on the Monday following the game at 2:30 p.m. If a bid is placed within the last 10 minutes of the auction, the auction will be extended another 10 minutes.
“These items are truly a rare piece of Auburn memorabilia and something every Auburn fan will want to own,” Hopkins said.
Lure auction schedule
Fans will have the opportunity to bid on the lure and jess set used during each pregame flight on the following dates:
- Sept. 7, Tulane. The auction opened Sept. 5 and will close Sept. 9.
- Sept. 14, Kent State. The auction will open Sept. 12 and close Sept. 16.
- Sept. 28, Mississippi State. The auction will open Sept. 26 and close Sept. 30.
- Nov. 2, Ole Miss. The auction will open Oct. 31 and close Nov. 4.
- Nov. 16, Georgia. The auction will open Nov. 14 and close Nov. 18.
- Nov. 23, Samford. The auction will open Nov. 21 and close Nov. 25.
- Nov. 30, Alabama. The auction will open Nov. 28 and close Dec. 2.
This story originally appeared on Auburn University’s website.