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Owl's Nest Sanctuary rescues sick bald eagle from pasture in Lakeland

The eagle likely ate prey that ingested rat bait
Posted at 10:04 PM, Sep 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-29 23:20:55-04

LAKELAND, Fla. -- The Owl's Nest Sanctuary for Wildlife rescued a sick bald eagle found on a pasture in Lakeland.

The eagle was leaning against a fence and was unable to move.

"She was in bad shape. One of the worst I've seen hands down with a bald eagle," said Kris Porter, Director of Owl's Nest Sanctuary for Wildlife.

"Normally, eagles come in with a broken wing or some war wounds from fighting. This was something totally different," she added.

Kris Porter, Director of Owl's Nest Sanctuary for Wildlife, cares for animals on a property in Odessa.

She said about 10 days ago, her volunteers rescued a bald eagle. Volunteers believe the raptor was sick likely from secondary poisoning, but it is impossible to know for sure.

"People putting out rat bait. The rat eats it, they start stumbling around. That's easy prey for a raptor so they grab them and that's secondary poisoning," said Porter.

The eagle received IV treatment at Busch Gardens. Porter is caring for the raptor now. She said it is regaining its strength.

"We switched from tube feeding to hand feeding. Once she figured out the food, she made up for lost time. She was eating three meals a day of constant food for a good four days and then she cut herself back," said Porter.

Porter hopes the eagle can be released back in Lakeland in the next week or so.

"We were bound and determined. We were going to get her back," said Porter.

"When we see something that magnificent that far down, we were so determined on we're going to pull her through," she added.