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[Update] Bald eagle recovering from gunshot wounds
The Northwest Raptor & Wildlife Center reports that the shot bald eagle that has been in its care since December 15 is showing signs of recovery. The young male bald eagle, who which was recovered with an apparent .22-caliber gunshot wound to its left wing in Beaver, WA, is still under intensive care at a veterinary hospital. He has recently been joined in Intensive Care by a barred owl rescued by the Center that suffered eye and beak injuries due to collision with a car.
"The search for the shooter in cooperation with the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife is still ongoing, as are our fundraising efforts to pay for the care of the bird," said Matthew Randazzo, Public Relations Director at the Center. "But we are happy to report that the young eagle is starting to show signs of progress in his recuperation."
"Ever since we nearly lost the eagle on Monday, we've been taking it slow," says Jaye Moore, Director of the Center. "That approach has been paying off. We have been able to clean, treat, and bandage his wounded wing, and he's eating regularly."
"He's also getting loud and feisty and ornery again, which are all great signs from a recovering eagle," says Moore, who has been rescuing and rehabilitating wildlife for 28 years. "He's getting loud and giving us hell when we approach. That shows he's starting to feel a little better."
The long-term prognosis for the eagle is still unclear. "We're waiting to see if the eagle can heal itself and naturally bridge the fracture in the ulna bone in his left wing," said Randazzo. "Even if he can, there's no telling yet what damage has been done to the wing's tendon, muscle, and surrounding soft tissue. We won't know if he can fly or be released for a long time."
"Right now, we're just happy both the eagle's recuperation and our investigation into the shooting are both still showing progress," said Randazzo. "We're hoping to have good news to report for the Holidays."
Tips leading to the capture of the person who shot this eagle can be sent to Matthew@NWRaptorCenter.com and to Fish & Wildlife at 1-877-933-9847.
-Earlier story below-
Jaye Moore, Director of the Northwest Raptor & Wildlife Center, and Dr. Jennifer Tavares of Greywolf Veterinary Hospital, tend to the wounded bald eagle. Above video courtesy of the Northwest Raptor & Wildlife Center.Sequim Gazette staff
The Northwest Raptor & Wildlife Center in Sequim and the Washington State Department of Fish and Game are seeking information about the person who shot a bald eagle on Dec. 15 in Beaver, nine miles north of Forks.
Jaye Moore, director of the nonprofit wildlife rescue and rehabilitation center, received a phone call about the bird and reported it to Brian Fairbanks, a Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife officer, who retrieved the wounded animal and brought it to the center.
“It is a very young male bald eagle born this year,” Moore said.
“Officer Fairbanks brought him to me in rough shape. He was cold, shivering and very weak. I cared for him and kept him warm through the night and took him the next morning to Dr. Maya Bewig at Greywolf Veterinary Hospital in Sequim. Dr. Bewig was able to confirm that the eagle had been shot and still has bullet fragments in one of his broken wings. With the help of Greywolf’s incredible staff, we are going to take the best care of him we can.”
The bird remained in critical condition in the intensive care ward of a local veterinary hospital Monday. The eagle suffered a fractured ulna in its left wing and the long-term prognosis is unknown.
“There is a sadistic and cruel individual at large who shot a juvenile bald eagle for his own personal amusement and left it to slowly die in the rain,” said Matthew Randazzo, the public relations director at the center.
Randazzo said they believe the bird was shot with a .22 caliber rifle.
Contact Randazzo at Matthew@NWRaptorCenter.com or the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife at 877-933-9847 with any tips.
Bald eagles are protected under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act and it is illegal to shoot them.