I guess the best thing about volunteering at a wildbird rehabilitation center, is its success stories. It's awesome when you have a bird that overcomes all obstacles. The one you wonder how it survived. Hopefully you get to see it released or placed as an education bird somewheres where people will also appreciate them.
The down side is when you loose one that you don't expect to. Captain Hook came to Bird TLC from Homer where he was found with a halibut hook caught under its tongue. He had over come that but had the scars to show his battle. Unfortunately he also got an infection in one of his wrist. He had to have a partial amputation, so he obviously wasn't releasable. After he recovered he was transferred to the flight center and the search began for a permeate home.
Unfortunately Hook wasn't the most attractive of eagles. His interaction with the halibut hook left him with few feathers around his right eye and even after moulting, they never grew back. What he lacked in good looks he made up with birdality (personality). He also stole the hearts of those who took care of him. He was a proud bird and we were proud of him.
I received a call from Gary while I was in a presentation. I called him back and he told me the sad news. He found Hook had passed away when he went out for his scheduled feeding. Later that night at the clinic we examined him and found not a thing wrong. We only guess it was his age that took him. I know of several sets of eyes that weren't dry for a few days. I hope he's with his friend Rollie.
Check out these other post about Catain Hook. Another fighter, Captain Hook, Captain Hook is Cool and Low Inventory at the Flight Center.
Later that night I took Gomes to the airport. He found a home at the Detroit Zoo. He came to us earlier this year after being electrocuted on a power line. He's probably in his third year and has a long life to look forward to.
Our flight center now has no eagles in it. That's the first I can recall in a long time. It does have two great horned owls that will be released in the next few weeks. After that we will shut the flight center down for the winter.