Friday, May 10, 2013

Two big miracles

FRANNIE first out of the box, low and fast, wings open, landing gear up and locked....

GRACE not far behind.

FRANNIE heading out very quickly

Today was one of the best in a long time. One year old FRANNIE and two year old AMAZING GRACE were released east of Cody in a most wonderful habitat there is for golden eagles. FRANNIE came in the middle of January suffering from severe lead poisoning, something that is hard to overcome due to the fact that the birds aren't found in time for treatment. One of the signs of lead is the inability for the bird to open its feet. In FRANNIE's case she had been walking around on her knuckles for so long they were really abraded. She went through three sessions of treatment, six shots a day for three days then off three then back on for three. She never gave up and neither did I.


AMAZING GRACE came to me for evaluation from a fellow rehabber. She suffered from a head injury and was unwilling to fly more than a few feet and very low to the ground. Otherwise she appeared just fine. Diane had her for a few months but wanted another opinion on what might help. Surprisingly, when the bird arrived and the crate door opened inside my eagle flight barn, she flew the entire 80' length with no problem. The next day she was on the lower wall perch, higher than I could reach. And the third day she was up on the high wall perch, almost 20' high. I have no idea what inspired her to "just go for it" but she did and these photos show the result.

Thanks Dr. Charles Preston for banding these young birds so if they are ever in trouble they can be identified. Chuck is doing ongoing research of golden eagles in the Big Horn Basin, these two have joined his efforts. The photos were taken by Penny Preston and Bonnie Smith.

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