Injured eagle rescued in White Rock: ‘It was the size of a turkey!’

Bald eagle may have gotten into a fight over territory

A bald eagle was rescued after it likely got in a fight above White Rock’s Five Corners neighbourhood on Sunday. (Bernie Blessman photo)

There was a turf war high above the City of White Rock that resulted in one of the casualties seeking refuge in the Five Corners neighbourhood.

However, the eagle paramedics were quick to administer first aid to the wounded.

The sound of squawking bald eagles above the 15100-block of Beachview Avenue captured the attention of nearby resident Bernie Blessman.

One of the three eagles, which were reportedly being harassed as they flew by a murder of crows, landed in Blessman’s neighbour’s yard and hid underneath some shrubbery, the White Rock man said.

Blessman called the Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL), which provides a 24/7 service for injured raptors.

A two-person crew, which Blessman described as competent, turned up and capture the bird within 30 minutes, Blessman said.

“They found it very quickly and they cornered it. And of course, they know how to handle these things.”

OWL raptor care manager Rob Hope said the female sustained a number of battle wounds, including a good sized wound to her left breast and a deep bruise near the breast bone and swollen muscles.

“She hit the ground pretty hard, which can be concerning how it goes over the next couple of days because we can’t see internally,” Hope said.

Hope said OWL applied two sutures to the wound and are running her on some antibiotics. If the bird makes a full recovery, she will be released back into the wild.

Hope said there was little doubt the injuries were caused by a fight, however, “this is minor compared to some of the things I’ve seen over the years with eagle fights.”

Eagle expert and South Surrey resident David Hancock, who has built a number of eagle nests on the Semiahmoo Peninsula and beyond, offered a theory as to why the birds were fighting.

VIDEO: Bald eagle caught in ‘amazing’ hunt for fish on B.C.’s coast

Hancock wasn’t aware of the specifics of the injured bird, however, he noted the eagle landed between two nests the Hancock Wildlife Foundation built – one of which is located on Marine Drive and the other located in South Surrey near 0 Avenue.

Hancock said there could have been a dispute between two territorial nest owners.

“Now, disputes can involve fighting, there’s no doubt, and one can grab the other and tear pieces out and so on. Or, and this is almost as frequently in and around houses and buildings, they get locked and they come down. One of them bashes itself on a pole and gets electrocuted possibly, hits something else like a building or tree or something else or whatever it is. So they can actually get injured incidental to their fighting,” Hancock said.

SEE ALSO: Despite having a broken leg, South Surrey eagle continues to care for young

Hancock said the injured bird is likely part of the Semiahmoo Peninsula resident population, not the migrating population that comes from the Arctic.

Blessman indicated that one of the most impressive things about the bird, which seemed to no longer have the ability to fly, was its size.

“It was the size of a turkey! The claws on this thing, oh my God,” Blessman said.

The bird was so big, Blessman said, that he alerted a neighbour because they owned a dog, but it wasn’t out of concern for the eagle.

“Because you know, if the dog goes after the eagle, the dog might lose. This thing was huge.”

In addition, Blessman said, the female bird had claws like needles, “I wouldn’t want to tackle it with those claws.”



aaron.hinks@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

A bald eagle was rescued after it likely got in a fight above White Rock’s Five Corners neighbourhood on Sunday. (Bernie Blessman photo)

A bald eagle was rescued after it likely got in a fight above White Rock’s Five Corners neighbourhood on Sunday. (Bernie Blessman photo)

A bald eagle was rescued after it likely got in a fight above White Rock’s Five Corners neighbourhood on Sunday. (Bernie Blessman photo)

Just Posted

Aldergrove zoo to reopen next week with new COVID-19 safety measures: spokesperson

Reopening to be ushered in by words from Darryl Plecas, Legislative assembly Speaker

School speed limits in force in Langley

Langley RCMP are asking pedestrians and drivers to be cautious as school resumes

There’s still Hope After Stroke during COVID-19

Program facilitator remains available by phone

Hot rods parade by Langley hospital at seven o’clock for front line workers

Few dozen from BC Hot Rod Association paraded their cars in private show for staff and seniors

Anyone participating in virtual Langley Walk this weekend?

Residents have until Sunday, May 31 to complete annual 5K challenge

Only four new COVID-19 cases, 228 active across B.C.

Health officials watching as activities ramp up

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Thanks for helping the Langley Advance Times to continue its mission to provide trusted local news

Feds looking at ways to reunite families amid COVID-19 border restrictions with U.S.

Some families with members of dual-citizenship have become separated due to the pandemic

Condition in kids with possible COVID-19 link being studied in Canada

This month, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an alert to doctors about MIS-C

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

COVID cancelled their wedding plans, so they married on a BC mountaintop

Ceremony was live streamed to friends and family around the world

Trudeau acknowledges racial unrest in U.S.; ‘We also have work to do in Canada’

‘Anti-black racism, racism, is real; it’s in the United States, but it’s also in Canada,’ Trudeau says

State of Local Emergency declared for Boundary as communities brace for river flooding

Warm weather and heavy rain could cause sections of Kettle River system to swell beyond 2018 levels

Large cruise ships barred from Canadian waters until end of October: Garneau

Last year 140 cruise ships brought more than two million visitors to Canadian ports

Most Read