On October 5, an animal control officer rescued a mature Bald Eagle at the King and Queen County landfill. The eagle was taken to a permitted rehabilitator for an initial examination and radiographs, and then was transported to the Wildlife Center on October 7.
Upon admission, the eagle was quiet, but was standing in its transport crate. Dr. Dana, the Center’s veterinary intern, examined the bird, but couldn’t find any significant injuries. Blood was drawn for an emergency panel and a lead test. Lead results measured at 0.13 ppm – a level that is considered “subclinical” and does not require treatment. Dr. Dana also took a set of radiographs, but did not see any injuries. Dr. Dana did note what appeared to be two pieces of metal in the eagle’s stomach. Because the eagle’s lead level was low, and it was not exhibiting any neurological symptoms, Dr. Dana does not believe this should be an issue for the eagle. Weighing in at 4.59 kgs, it’s likely that this eagle is a female.
Because a bacterial or viral infection could not be ruled out, Dr. Dana started the eagle on a course of antibiotics, as well as subcutaneous fluids. The eagle was placed in the Center’s holding room for overnight observation. On October 8, the Bald Eagle was bright and alert – and was bouncing around in its enclosure. The veterinary team decided to move the eagle outside to a large flight pen – A1 – for further observation.
When the eagle was placed in the flight pen, the bird flew the length of the flight pen two times before landing on the ground. While the eagle can get lift, it appeared to tire very easily. The staff will continue to monitor the bird – with the assistance of a new Axis PTZ [pan-tilt-zoom] cam in A1. At this point, the cam is only available for internal observation, and is not available for streaming through the Center’s website – yet!