Eagles, Release

A Tale of Two Eagles

11 Sep , 2016   Video

An injured bald eagle

An immature bald eagle hit by a care is examined at the CWRC

On July 12, 2016 the CWRC admitted a juvenile male bald eagle that had been hit by a car. It was thin and had injuries to two of its toes on its right foot. On one toe the talon and underlying bone were completely amputated, on the other toe the talon was cracked at the root. There did not appear to be any other issues. The patient was stabilized with fluids, pain medication, antibiotics and was given a little bit of food. We also took blood to test for lead poisoning. The bird was also treated for lice and hippoboscid flies.

Closeup on injured eagle foot

Injured toes on a bald eagle foot

A few days later the bird was anesthetized for x-rays which revealed two broken toes, as suspected but fortunately no other breaks.

He spent the next couple of days in our nursery until he was eating on his own. He was then returned to the clinic for a follow up surgery to remove the broken talon as the bone inside was no longer viable. He remained in the nursery while that healed.

He was then moved to a larger space in the Big Jeezley (our main raptor building). Here he spent the next 5 weeks rehabilitating, gaining strength and exercising.

He was released today along with another eagle. He was a bit hesitant to leave the dog carrier at first but was soon airborne and flying away with confidence.

 

Eagle with injury to tongue

Feathers sticking under tongue

On July 26th, 2016 another orphaned juvenile eagle was admitted to the CWRC. She was quite emaciated and had what appeared to be a fly-fishing hook under her tongue. The patient was stabilized with fluids, pain medication, antibiotics and was given a little bit of food. We also took her blood to test for lead poisoning. This bird was also treated for lice and hippoboscid flies. These are two common parasites that will infest an eagle that has been grounded or is in a weakened condition.

Eagle tongue injury

Chin feathers sticking up under an eagles tongue

The foreign body under the tongue was not a fly-fishing hook as initially suspected but was in fact her chin feathers. We think that perhaps she might have accidentally impaled herself on a small branch puncturing through skin below the tongue pushing the feathers in. This would have made eating quite uncomfortable and might have contributed to her emaciated condition.

With the wound cleaned she was returned to the nursery and kept there until she began to eat on her own. She was then moved to the large raptor building, The Big Jeezley, for further rehabilitation and flight conditioning.

She was successfully released today and took off almost immediately after the door to the transport carrier was opened. She flew with strength and confidence.

 

 

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