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Laura Fleming, owner of Wild Birds Unlimited, and Molly take a break Friday while setting up the new store in the Medford Center. Mail Tribune / Jamie Lusch

Wild Birds Unlimited to open in new location

Wild Birds Unlimited will return to Medford this month after a 12-month hiatus.

The supply store is slated to open in a new location with a new owner Aug. 21 next to Rite-Aid in the Medford Center.

Laura Fleming acquired the franchise from former owner Katy Reed, who retired last August. Soon after the sale, the building where the store had been located for nearly 20 years on Crater Lake Avenue was sold.

Fleming had a business, but no storefront. She began looking for a new location late last winter and signed a lease in late spring.

"I have dreamed of having my own bird store for many years now," Fleming said. "When the opportunity to buy the WBU franchise came up, I jumped in with both feet."

The 1,600-square-foot shop at 987 Medford Center Dr. was formerly a military recruitment office.

Fleming is a certified wild bird specialist with a bachelor's degree in wildlife biology and management from Michigan State University. She is a member of the Ashland-based Klamath Bird Observatory board. She also has 25 years of experience in retail, having first worked for Wild Birds before a 15-year run at Grange Co-op, where she has been a wild-bird supplies buyer.

The retailer stocks supplies for feeding and observing birds, ranging from bird baths to binoculars. She intends to have three or four part-time employees

Wild Birds Unlimited arrived in Medford on East McAndrews Road in 1992, moving to Crater Lake Avenue a couple of years later. Reed was its second owner.

The store's telephone number is 541-772-2107, and the website is www.medford.wbu.com

Reach reporter Greg Stiles at 541-776-4463 or business@mailtribune.com. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GregMTBusiness, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/greg.stiles.31, and read his blog at www.mailtribune.com/EconomicEdge

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