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Baby bald eagle nabbed by RCMP in Pitt Meadows

The local police helped a raptor rehabilitation group rescue a young eagle covered in mites
A bald eagle was rescued by the OWL – Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society – on Thursday, July 15, 2021. (RCMP/Special to The News)

A young bald eagle was rescued by a local owl rehab organization in Maple Ridge Thursday on a local dike in the area of Rennie Road and Koerner Road.

In the morning hours of July 15, OWL – Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society received a call from the Ridge Meadows RCMP for a bald eagle rescue operation. The bird was spotted by Jade Werger and Melissa Del Cid Moon, while out on a walk by the Sawneset dike. The duo noticed that the bird wasn’t moving,

“We got a hold of OWL who sent a volunteer and a RCMP officer out to rescue the bird. Glad the bird could be helped! Sharing this incase anyone comes across a similar situation – you know who to call! We were able to get through to the SPCA and OWL is who they told us to call for wild, raptor birds,” said Werger in a Facebook post.

An officer from the RCMP went onsite and kept an eye on the eagle until a volunteer from the rehab society arrived, said Rob Hope, general manager with OWL.

“Like any other rescue for a bird of prey, it was difficult, but it made our volunteer’s job so much smoother with the RCMP officer keeping an eye on the bird. It just made it easier to locate,” he said.

RELATED: Barn-owl rescue in South Surrey ends with hospital visit for OWL volunteer

The Ridge Meadows RCMP said in a tweet, “Ridge Meadows assisted with a bald eagle rescue today. The eagle was about 3kg and 10 weeks old and is off to get checked out and hopefully released soon! Thanks Carol and @OWLRehab all the work you do to help these animals. #everydayisanadventure #bestjobever”

Volunteer Carol Norris was able to get ahold of the young bird with the assistance from the RCMP member. The bird, which is six to seven weeks young, is still too little to be flying, said Hope. When Norris found the bird, she was weak and covered in mites. The bird was taken in by the rehab society and will be cared for, for three to four weeks.

“Because she is so thin and weak, we will feed her, care for her and build up her muscles. We will then send her to the flight pen and once she is ready to fly, she will be banded and released into the wild,” said Hope.

Best thing to do if you spot a bird injured or in distress is to call the rehab society, Hope said. He also pointed out that taking pictures and sending those to the society are often helpful as they can determine if and how much help the bird would be needing.

“It is also important to note that it is way more helpful if we have eyes on the bird, because between the time we get a call a volunteer goes out, if the bird moves even 20 feet into a bush, it could be lost to us forever,” Hope concluded.

If you spot an eagle, falcon, hawk, osprey, owl, or a vulture in distress or injured, contact the 24-hour raptor emergency number 604-946-3171. OWL takes on only raptors or birds of prey.

ALSO READ: Bobcat terrorizing local bird sanctuary

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A bald eagle was rescued by the OWL – Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society – on Thursday, July 15, 2021. (RCMP/Special to The News)
A bald eagle was rescued by the OWL – Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society – on Thursday, July 15, 2021. (RCMP/Special to The News)

Priyanka Ketkar

About the Author: Priyanka Ketkar

Priyanka Ketkar has been a journalist since 2011 with extensive experience in community-driven news writing, feature writing, and editing.
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