Friday, February 2nd, a call came in from MyFWC, a Juvenile Bald Eagle was spotted on the ground in Winter Haven, Fl. We immediately dispatched the call to one of our many volunteers, Kelly Thomas. She determined the young eagle was in critical condition and transported it directly to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay to be seen by their wonderful Veterinary Staff. After being evaluated by The Wildlife Docs Veterinarian Dr. Maria Spriggs, it was given the proper medications and fluids.
It appeared that the Eagle had the unfortunate luck of probably coming in contact with some sort of prey that was poisoned, in turn poisoning itself. This type of secondary poisoning is more common than you can image and not all the birds of prey and predatory mammals that consume poisoned prey are fortunate to be rescued and treated in time to survive. We are please to say that due to the quick chain of response and treatment, this eagle’s story has a happy ending.
After a few days of rest and recuperation, the eagle was sent to Mary Opall of Nature World Wildlife Rescue to test flight, and was immediately given the thumbs up! With it’s full recovery it was ready to be release back into the wild away from the area it was originally poisoned.
Release day for this beauty was a thrill for all who were involved. The weather was perfect, the scenery was beautiful, and we were welcomed at Upper Tampa Bay Park, where we have released many of our other rehabbed animals.
To read more on secondary poisoning, here is an interesting article still relevant today: http://www.audubon.org/magazine/january-february-2013/poisons-used-kill-rodents-have-safer
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Recipient of SeaWorld Busch Gardens Conservation Grant 2017-18