On Sunday, December 13, a Bald Eagle was brought to the Center by a Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources officer after the bird was found in a field in Afton, Virginia. Dr. Sarah, one of the Center’s veterinary interns, did not find any significant external injuries, but found that the bird was dehydrated and had a very depressed mentation. This bird's blood was tested for lead, which came back positive for very high lead levels. Radiographs did not show any lead fragments in the bird's gastrointestinal system. Dr. Sarah started the eagle on a course of medication called chelation therapy to rid the bird’s system of lead.
Dr. Sarah estimates that this eagle is about three to four years old. Measurements of the eagle used to determine gender are not conclusive; the bird's key measurements are in the middle of the spectrum where female and male parameters overlap.