Sunday, November 18, 2012

Staten Island Zoo Bald Eagle, IWRC Conference

Intern Brian and I do the final check on Tweety before he takes his flight to New York.  In this photo Brian is applying Udder Balm to his feet to keep them soft as a baby's bottom.  ...which is important for raptors.

In early October we sent one of our non-releasable Bald Eagles to the Staten Island Zoo.  He will be a permanent member of the zoo family there.  After the Super Storm Sandy, we were gravely concerned for our friends and their families as well as for the animals including the Bald Eagle that was once our patient. We contacted the Staten Island Zoo staff and heard back that the zoo personal were all affected by the storm. Sadly, many staff members have lost their homes and some lost loved ones.  The zoo itself weathered the storm with little damage and no animals were lost due to the quick thinking and pre-planning of the zoo veterinarian and staff.  Our Bald Eagle is doing well and enjoying his enclosure and the lovely lady Bald Eagle with whom he shares the space.  We will continue to keep our friends and all the residents of Staten Island and surrounding areas in our thoughts as they recover from this disaster.

People often ask us how we transport eagles and other birds cross country.  The answer is by domestic airlines on the same flights you would take...but in a different part of the plane.  The photos below are from the mid October when "Tweety" our handsome male Bald Eagle flew to New York to begin his new life.  Before any bird leaves our care they receive a physical to make sure they are in top shape for travel and their new homes.  We don't usually name our patients.  This eagle was named by the young family that found and rescued him and the name stuck.

All is ready and Intern Peter is about to put "Tweety" into the carrier bound for New York.


Airline personal and TSA are always excited to see a Bald Eagle staring back at them .

We had to arrive at the airport at 0500. Brian and Peter wait with the eagle while the paperwork is finished.

Good Luck sweet bird.  We hope he has a long and happy life at the Staten Island Zoo.

This week is the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council (IWRC) Symposium in Appleton, WI.  We hosted a field trip to our facility on Wednesday 11-14-12.   It was great to see so many wildlife rehabilitators from around the country visiting REGI.  I will be presenting 6 professional papers at the conference this week. 

It was terrific to have so many IWRC members tour the REGI facility this week. 

Touring the REGI ground this time of year is not as comfortable as in the summer.  Because our guests came from across the country we had to remind them to dress warmly as we have already experienced snow in our part of the world.
 Patients continue to flow into REGI at a rapid rate.  More updates soon.

Have a great week everyone.

Marge Gibson

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Eagle Release Success, Release photos

 The eagle releases last Saturday were a resounding success.  Each eagle soared into the sky and soared and soared... It was exactly what we like to see when we release there magnificent birds.  Enjoy the following photos as each bird regained their freedom.

This magnificent adult female Bald Eagle had the highest blood lead level of any eagle we have ever worked with.  The fact that she recovered 100% is miraculous.  She was dealt a difficult blow by humans through the lead exposure. We hope the remainder of her life is peaceful and trouble free.

The adult eagle is about to feel the wind of freedom for the first time in several months. She is focused and well aware her captive status is about to change.

There is nothing more beautiful than a former patient flying free once again.  We at REGI are honored to have helped her regain her health and to give her  a second chance at life.
This young Bald Eagle was found by a family from Iowa while spending time in Northern WI.    The eagle was caught in a snare.  He had been there for some time and was starving and suffered from lead poisoning.  We were delighted the entire family could be there for his release back to the wild.

Photo by Bill Michaels....Female immature Bald Eagle takes to the sky after recovering from a wing fracture.
And he is off to reclaim his place in the natural world.  This young eagle flew and flew in circles and loops and was so enjoying his freedom. Stay safe little one. 

Release is always the best part of doing wildlife rehabilitation.  People ask us if we will miss these magnificent patients.  The answer is a resounding "NO".  We certainly will think of them and wish them well, but seeing them fly free and in good health is our success as rehabilitators as well as the success of our patients. 

Have a great day!
Marge Gibson

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Eagle Releases Nov.3, 2012 Sauk Praire, WI

Just a note to let our friends and eagle affectionados that we will be releasing 4 Bald Eagles on Saturday Nov.3, 2012 at VFW Memorial Park in Sauk Praire, WI. The Park is right on the WI River in Sauk Praire.  The release time will be about noon.  Photos are welcomed.

One of the eagles will be an adult that recovered from the highest level of lead we have ever seen.  She is an older bird and is amazing from a number of perspectives.  Three of the eagles will be immatures between the ages of 2-4.  All have incredible stories . Two were hit by a cars and recovered from broken wings. One was a lead poisoning case with an wonderful story or rescue and survival by an Iowa family while in northern WI.  More on the birds soon.  Enjoy the photos below from recent eagle releases, 
Bald Eagle release Sept 2012.

Bald Eagle Release on Oct 6, 2012
 Hope to see you there.
Marge Gibson