Volunteers rescue injured eaglet

May 31, 2012 at 5:09 PM
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LARGO, Fla., May 31 (UPI) -- A group of volunteers in Florida rescued a baby bald eagle that was unable to make its first flight due to a problem with its eye.

The Birds of Prey center said the eaglet hatched April 12, late in the season, high up in a 40-foot pine tree outside the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Tampa Bay shelter in Largo and last week volunteers noticed the baby bird appeared to be having problems with its eye that could prevent it from being successful in flight, the Tampa Bay (Fla.) Times reported Thursday.

Volunteer Art Finn scaled the tree Wednesday and placed the 5-pound bird in a bag that he was then able to lower to the ground. Birds of Prey center volunteers said they believe the eaglet's eye may have been injured by a crow.

Experts said the eaglet would not be able to survive in the wild without two good eyes for hunting and the center said it will live in captivity if veterinarians are unable to repair its eye.

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