On July 4, 2018, a fifth-year Bald Eagle was released at Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge in Richmond County, Virginia. The eagle was rescued at the refuge in May 2018. Read more about the eagle’s history and rehabilitation here. Prior to release, the eagle was fitted with a GPS transmitter.
At the Center, the eagle was known as #18-0752 – the 752nd patient admitted to the Center in 2018. Now, the eagle will be known as RR53. “RR” represents Rappahannock River, where the eagle was rescued and released. The numbers are the last two digits on the transmitter that the eagle is wearing. Each transmitter has a five-digit number written on the side of it in permanent black marker so that the eagle could possibly be identified at a distance.
July 15 update: We haven't received any data from RR53 in the past three weeks; it appears as though the GPS unit is losing battery charge for some reason. We consulted with the Cellular Tracking experts recently; they have no reason to believe that anything happened to the bird at this point, it's more likely something with the transmitter. We'll stay tuned and see if we hear from this bird again soon!
June 21: RR53 continues to hang out around the Fones Cliffs area, making a trip across the Rappahannock River every few days.
June 9: Bald Eagle RR53 stayed at Fones Cliffs during this past week, taking a couple of trips across the Rappahannock and back. Take a 360-degree tour of the area here!
June 2: On May 27, RR53 left the King George area and followed the Rappahannock River southeast to Richmond County. The eagle is hanging out on the river at Fones Cliffs, home to a very large concentration of Bald Eagles. According to The Chesapeake Conservancy, this area is "a four mile stretch of white colored diatomaceous cliffs rising over 100 feet above the Rappahannock River. It is the ancestral home of the Rappahannock Tribe and a globally significant Important Bird Area for resident and migratory bald eagles and other migratory birds."