Recent rescue @ the Juneau Raptor Center: Golden eagle

Posted: Friday, January 14, 2011

TYPE OF BIRD: Golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos).

Courtesy of Scot Tiernan / Courtesy of Scot Tiernan
Courtesy of Scot Tiernan / Courtesy of Scot Tiernan

WHEN RESCUED: Dec. 15, 2010.

WHAT HAPPENED: Good Samaritans found the bird in the Wrangell area. This eagle, later identified as a male golden eagle, was transferred to the care of volunteers with the JRC with the help of the U.S. Forest Service in Wrangell.

INJURIES: Examinations revealed a bird able to stand, but also one that was very thin and dehydrated. No breaks were found and the bird had full extension of both wings.

CARE: Volunteers initiated care, which included tube feeding with Pedialyte, Nutri-Cal — a vitamin for animals — and subcutaneous fluid administration. He was housed in a large kennel and after several days had improved and was given liver. After some time, the eagle continued to show sings of improvement and was later given clean deer meat.

RELEASE: The eagle was transferred to Anchorage’s Bird Treatment and Learning Center for continued care and over-wintering after the Christmas holiday. At this time, release will likely happen in the spring.

UPDATE FROM BIRD TLC ON JAN. 5: “The Golden Eagle is doing great!” the organization reports. TLC crew members wrapped his foot due to a possible broken toe, and have begun administering Flagyl, an antibiotic used to treat frounce (a highly contagious yeast infection of the digestive tract). The bird “is eating like a champ.” And has a couple lesions in the mouth, which are being monitored.

MORE ABOUT THE GOLDEN EAGLE: It remains as mystery as to why this particular golden eagle ended up in Southeast Alaska at this time of year. Those associated with the case speculate that this eagle got lost during migration, which could have been caused by a variety of things including wind storms. Golden eagles are primarily found in Alaska’s interior locales. Generally speaking, these birds of prey are found throughout the Northern Hemisphere, and they are common in western North America, but rare on the east coast. It is one of the largest birds of prey in North America; only the Bald Eagle and California Condor get larger. This bird can be identified by its dark brown coloration all over and golden sheen on the head.

• Message phone for the Juneau Raptor Center, 586-8393; emergency pager, 790-5424; or for more information about the JRC, go online to

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