Bald Eagle #21-3026 Update

During the past three weeks, Center staff have been closely observing Bald Eagle #21-3026. While the imping procedure completed on October 26 was successful, both the veterinary and rehabilitation staff have confirmed that all three donor feathers have since fallen out or have been chewed off. Fortunately, the staff have observed new feather growth in the damaged areas during the past few weeks.

Many Bald Eagles in Virginia experience seasonal molting – during the spring and summer months, old feathers are sequentially dropped in small numbers (allowing the bird to retain the ability to fly) and replaced with new feathers over time. Fortunately, new feather growth is not limited to the spring and summer seasons. Veterinary staff expect the eagle’s new feathers to become fully developed during the next month. At that time, Center staff will be able to more accurately develop a plan of care. Recent daily physical conditioning routines have not shown improvement in the eagle's ability to fly properly. This patient’s prognosis remains guarded.

For now, daily exercise has been discontinued while the eagle’s feathers grow and develop. Critter Cams watcher may have the chance to see this eagle live on Critter Cam 3!