Wildlife Center of Virginia marking return to good health of young bald eagle

wildlife center bald eagle
Photo courtesy Wildlife Center of Virginia.

A young bald eagle treated for the past five months at the Wildlife Center of Virginia will be released back into the wild on Thursday.

The release, scheduled for 1 p.m. at Grand Caverns Park in Grottoes, is free and open to the public.

Attendees are asked to RSVP at rsvp@wildlifecenter.org. Attendees should plan on parking near Shelter Four.

This is one of three bald eagle releases that the Center has scheduled for this week.  Another eagle will be released on Tuesday at Berkeley Plantation, on the James River below Richmond; a third eagle will be released on Friday in Richmond County, on Virginia’s Northern Neck.

The eagle to be released on Thursday was picked up by an Augusta County animal control officer on a road in Middle River on March 6. Center veterinarians suspect that the eagle was hit by a car; they found that the immature eagle had elevated blood lead levels and had sustained a number of other injuries, including fractures of the right wing clavicle and the right coracoid, and puncture wounds on the left wing.

The eagle received fluids, anti-inflammatories and pain medication, and was started on chelation therapy, to reduce lead levels.  And the vets also applied antiseptics to the puncture wounds – wounds that would prove to be particularly difficult to treat.

The eagle has spent the past three months in a large flight pen, maturing and practicing flying. Center veterinarians have determined that the eagle is now ready to be released back into the wild.


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