Bald Eagle Makes Full Recovery After Taking a Shotgun Blast to the Wing

by Emily Morgan
Photo by: KenCanning

After a shotgun nearly killed a bald eagle in a horrible accident, the bird is gearing up to take flight. The bald eagle has fully recovered at the Cascade Raptor Center in Oregon.

According to the Cascade Raptor Center, officials there received a call from someone on September 22 who said they had rescued a severely injured bald eagle from a river.

Immediately, the raptor center staff brought in the bird for medical attention. After examination, they concluded that the female bald eagle had massive bleeding and a hole in her wing. She also had to be isolated for five days due to an outbreak of bird flu.

Despite her quarantine and her injuries, the staff was able to properly give the bald eagle food, water, antibiotics, and painkillers. After her quarantine period, they determined with an x-ray that the eagle got her injuries due to taking several shotgun pellets in the wing.

According to raptor center staff, the pellets missed vital organs but caused severe bleeding and tore muscle tissue. Thankfully, she didn’t sustain permanent damage, and the eagle made a speedy recovery.

Now, the eagle plans to fly free on Friday, October 14, when the staff takes her back to the Reedsport area to be released. Per reports from the Cascade Raptor Center, they’ve seen 19 cases of bald eagle incidents so far in 2022. They were each rescued from dangerous situations, such as being stuck in a trap or shot. In one case, a baby eagle fell out of its nest.

According to the rescue center, they’ve had more cases involving eagles than they’ve ever seen in one year. They believe the increased number of bald eagles is due to their increasing population in Oregon’s Willamette Valley.

Bald eagle finds forever home after suffering suspected gunshot wound

In Kentucky, visitors at the Land Between the Lakes Woodlands Nature Station were surprised when they saw its second bald eagle.

Didatinidohi, also known as Dohi, was recently rescued in West Virginia and spent a few months at a rehab center. After recovering, experts determined he could never return to the wild due to a wing injury, according to Public Programs Coordinator Marissa Lindstrom.

Dohi, who gets his name from the Cherokee word for “leader” or “chief,” later joined Taha. She’s the station’s female bald eagle. According to staff, the two potential lovebirds and has been adjusting well to each other.

“He’s acclimated really well to both being with us and being in front of the public,” Lindstrom said. “He’s doing great with Taha too. They seem chummy.”

Like the bald eagle in Oregon, Windstorm also said a gunshot most likely injured Dohi. During his time at the Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia in Morgantown, West Virginia, experts determined that he couldn’t be rehabilitated due to being unable to fly.