Bald Eagle #12-2553

Species Name (EN): 
Species Name (LA): 
Admission Date: 
November 13, 2012
Location of Rescue: 
Essex County, Virginia
Cause of Admission / Condition: 
Likely hit by vehicle
Died November 16, 2012
Patient Status: 
Patient Archive

On November 12, a Department of Game and Inland Fisheries officer picked up a mature Bald Eagle by the side of the road in Mount Landing, Virginia. The eagle was taken to a local permitted rehabilitator; the eagle was transported to the Wildlife Center the following day.

Dr. Rich, vet student Alicia, and diagnostic intern Julia examined the large eagle when it arrived. Likely a female, the eagle was not able to stand, but did have use of her feet. The team performed blood work and took a set of radiographs to see if they were able to determine why the eagle couldn’t stand. On radiographs, Dr. Rich noted an area of concern on the eagle’s spine – there was enough trauma to one area that led Dr. Rich to believe that the eagle may have a spinal fracture.

The eagle was given fluids, anti-inflammatories, and pain medications and was placed in the Center’s oxygen chamber for the evening. The staff will closely monitor the eagle over the next few days.


November 16, 2012

On the third day of observation, the veterinary staff noted further decline in the eagle’s status. On November 15, the eagle was still unable to stand and was not using either of its legs. The bird did not consume any of its meal from the night before and was showing signs of upper respiratory distress.

The veterinary team planned to observe the eagle for an additional day before deciding if humane euthanasia was the best option. Unfortunately, on the morning of November 16, Bald Eagle #12-2553 was found dead.

November 14, 2012

Bald Eagle #12-2553 survived the night, and appeared alert in the Center's oxygen chamber on the morning of November 14. Dr. Rich reported that the eagle was still not standing -- and when the eagle was caught up for medications and fluids, the eagle did not appear to have use of her right leg. With this decline, the Center staff are very guarded about the eagle's prognosis. They will give the eagle an additional day of observation.

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