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Jul 9, 2019 10:44 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Rescued Eagle On The Mend At Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center

An injured eagle was brought in to the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center. JORDANA PEARLMAN BY JORDANA PEARLMAN
Jul 9, 2019 11:44 AM

A juvenile bald eagle, possibly suffering from rodenticide poisoning, was rescued in Amagansett last week and taken to the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center in Hampton Bays, where it is being cared for.

At about 8 a.m. on June 30, the bald eagle was discovered on a porch on Leeton Road in Amagansett by Tom Ratcliffe, a rescue center volunteer, and taken to the center.

The Wildlife Rescue Center’s purpose is to help animals recuperate and release them back into the wild. In order to avoid pet-like treatment and attachment, the animals are not given names but instead are given case numbers when admitted to the center. Permanent residents are given names, however.

Staci Earl, a wildlife rehabilitator and hospital supervisor, performed the eagle’s initial medical exam. The eagle was admitted with a heavy infestation of bird lice, she said. Test results showed that the eagle was dehydrated and underweight. Its wings sagged, which suggested weakness and lethargy.

Workers suspected the eagle suffered from rodenticide poisoning, possibly from the consumption of prey that had been poisoned. Although the eagle was being treated for the suspected conditions, it would be impossible to say for sure what happened to it, they said. Caretakers and wildlife rehabilitators are giving the eagle around-the-clock care.

The eagle’s exact age was undetermined, but it appears to be young—bald eagles’ head feathers become white at around age 5, and the rescued eagle still has brown head feathers.

Blood work and medical exams haven’t shown much improvement in the eagle’s condition since it was brought in, rescue workers said. It is still weak and is showing symptoms of being sick. However, it is eating well. The eagle’s regular meals include mice and rats, although its favorite food is fish.

The center tries to maintain the wild surroundings of the animals—the eagle usually perches on a stool under a heat lamp. As a raptor, it is also regularly glaring at his caretakers, and makes a lot of noise. As it becomes stronger, it should become more aggressive, they said.

The eagle does not have any physical injuries that would prevent it from being able to live on its own after recuperating in the center. Employees and caretakers are hopeful, they said. However, since he was only brought in eight days ago, it is too early to tell if or when it will be released, they said.

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