Bald Eagle #17-007

Learn About Patient #17-007

  • Classification: Bird
  • Species: Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)
  • Lifespan in the Wild: 20 yrs
  • Wingspan: 6-7.5ft
  • Weight: 9-13 lbs
  • Range in the Wild: Most of the Northern Hemisphere (excluding Mexico)
  • Habitat in the Wild: Mature forests and open bodies of water
    • Diet in the Wild: fish, carrion, waterfowl, small mammals
    • Diet at Wildlife Images: fish, poultry, venison
    • Arrival: 1/13/17
    • Injury: laceration to the throat and crop stasis
    • Gender: Female

Glory goes back to the wild!

Animal Care and Education (ACE) Team got a call on Friday, January 13th about a downed bald eagle in Cave Junction at Vertical Horizons Tree House Paradise. The owners found the eagle on the ground and in a dazed condition. ACE Team went to recover the eagle, and upon immediate inspection saw a chip on her beak and that she was unable to stand. The eagle being a young adult, probably around four years old, may have been battered by recent storms.

Upon returning to the Wildlife Hospital, ACE team performed a more thorough examination of the eagle’s injuries and found a laceration to the throat and crop stasis. The crop is the muscular pouch next to a bird’s throat and is used to store food before it is digested. In crop stasis, the crop essentially isn’t working, and any food inside at the time has the potential to rot. Such was the case with this eagle – potentially caused by the eagle eating frozen material during the storm.

Initially the eagle was treated with fluids, antibiotics and pain medicine. The throat laceration was cleaned and bandaged, with a change of dressing each day to prevent infection. Super glue was applied to the chipped beak to help it heal correctly. Within days the eagle had made vast improvement, and regained the ferocity important in a raptor.

After a few days in an outdoor enclosure where Animal Care staff monitored her progress and could ensure she has the ability to return to the wild, she is ready for release. According to state and federal regulations, wildlife has to be released close to where it was found. With the enthusiastic support of the owner of Vertical Horizons Treehouse Paradise, Wildlife Images will be able to release the eagle from their property.