I got a call today from Britt while she was feeding at the flight center. Rollie was breathing heavy and it was kind of raspie. My heart dropped and made plans to get him after work and take him to the clinic. Todd and Cindy are on vacation this week, but they were going to come in for him.
After work we drove out to the flight center not expecting the best. I walked up to Rollie in the cell and as he ran he would stop and try to catch his breath. We caught him and placed him in a kennel to transport to the clinic. He was breathing heavy even when he had rested in the kennel for a bit. Things were not looking good at all.
Rollie had come to Bird TLC on 6/22/2007 and was checked in by Mary Bethe, Ruth and myself. He had been hit by a car and had been scuffed up pretty good. There was some head trauma too. He spent some quality time at the clinic and was later transferred to the flight center.
At the flight center we noticed that he tried to fly and would trip and roll over. We couldn't figure what was going on. He also took high careful steps. Ruth nick named him Rollie and it stuck. Cindy came out to the flight center for a visit and to examine Rollie. She found his left wing would come out of joint sometimes. So sometimes he would trip on it and roll and other times he would fly. Nothing could be done so this made him a non-releasable bird.
He had that beautiful mature bald eagle head. This summer being as gorgeous as it was, the sun would shine on him and he looked picture perfect. He also stayed close to Captain Hook, another bird out at the flight center. They just seemed to be buds.
Birds that are non-releasable are placed on what I call Eagle Bay. It's a website that organizations with the right permits and willing to go through the proper procedures can acquire these birds for educational purposes. Even though they are non-releaseable, they are a valuable education tool. It's been hard to place birds this year, we think because of the economy. It's quite a commitment to caretake for one of these birds. He also had some issues that some might not want to deal with. So we took care of him and he shared his eagleness with us.
Dr. Palmatier wanted to find out what had caused her situation. It wasn't asper as we suspected. She was having heart failure. We found out she was female and not a he and she was a much older bird than what we had thought. She had lived a long life. The last of it she was caretaked by thosed who cared for her.
We'll miss you Rollie. Birds like you remind us of why we at TLC do what we do.