Monday, November 8, 2010

Hoots, Howls, and Hollers 11/08/2010

Today I am all about rallying. It is an interesting word that comes to mind regarding bald eagle 10-3098. She is a five year old bald eagle who came into our care a little over a week ago. What has this got to do with “rally”? Well, rally has several definitions that apply here. Let me explain.

Rally number one…. When 10-3098 was spotted on the tracks at the Verde Canyon railroad the first day, the staff made immediate efforts to get help, but as she flew off they figured all was ok. When she was spotted down again the next day, the troops rallied and one of the railroad’s employees, Brandi, a biologist, and a Game and Fish biologist, Tuck, jumped into action. Her strong desire to stay put gave her strength for a 20 foot chase. Since she could no longer fly, the conclusion was self evident. She just didn’t have a lot of fight left in her. The locals rallied in their efforts to get help for her. Our hotline and rescue teams took over to get assistance for her. In the end Tuck was the transport.

Rally number two…to recover, or revive as in a state of health. For 10-3098 this seems to be the case. When she was brought in and evaluated, she had off the charts lead levels. Her lead count was so high it wasn’t measurable by our in house tester. The lab reports were higher than we have ever had in an eagle. She should have been dead. Add to that her uric acid was measured and also beyond the realm of anything resembling a bird that would survive. She had a cloudy eye with a non functional nictitating membrane. X rays showed a mottling on her lungs and also an enlarged left kidney. She was highly dehydrated and couldn’t keep her food down. She should have been dead. But, guess what….she didn’t die.

Rally number one comes back into play at this point. Staff and volunteers rallied in her care. She was chelated to begin to remove the lead from her system, and hopefully, she was caught and treated soon enough that it hadn’t leached into bones making it a longer and more difficult process to remove. She was given fluids regularly, hand/forced fed very small amounts at a time many times a day, and monitored consistently. And, she rallied to the rallying of the troops.

Rally definition number three is the future rally. We are hoping to be able to assemble a group of her admirers…the nest watch biologists at Game and Fish, all of the people who have responded on FaceBook, all of the volunteers and staff who have helped her, all of the caring folks at the Verde Canyon Railroad, and all of you who have sent the healing energy…yes, rally all of you for her release back into the wild. The jury is still out on this, but we are very, very hopeful. She continues to improve. Her lead count is way down so that the chelation can be delayed for a number of days. She is eating well. We are awaiting uric acid test results. And best of all she is really feisty. We are looking forward to moving her out of intensive care to an outside enclosure.

All good signs….

What has been so amazing about this is that we have been able to watch her spirit fight back and that has lifted all of our spirits. None of us want to get our hopes up only to have them dashed and that sometimes happens. But, I felt it was important for each of you to know how such rallies can impact us all….

And then, there is the male bald eagle seen circling over head as she stood grounded and unable to fly up to him. I’ll bet he is looking for a rally also.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Shes beautiful, Im sure she will heal in the capable hands of Liberty Wildlife and be returned to her mate.