Soarin’ Hawk to Release Eagle After Two Years of Rehabilitation

A young bald eagle that was found two years ago in emaciated condition has been rehabilitated by the northeast Indiana non-profit group Soarin’ Hawk and will be released back into the wild on Sunday, Nov. 11 at 2 p.m. at SalamonieReservoir. The public is invited to witness the release by Soarin’ Hawk volunteers at Salamonie Beach, 9214 Lost Bridge Road West, Andrews. The eagle will be released at Salamonie Reservoir because several pairs of eagles are in residence there. After two years of recovery, the goal is for the young raptor to connect with other eagles. In 2016, the then-six-month-old...Read more

Euthanasia: A Humane Option

Euthanasia is, hands down, the most difficult aspect of my job as a raptor technician. It never gets easier. As a veterinary medical professional, I find it extremely difficult at times to find a balance between becoming overly emotional and aloof. If I invest too many emotions into a euthanasia I am not able to properly provide adequate medical care to a sick bird. If I am cold and detached I risk losing the part of me that makes me compassionate. The one thing I always keep in the back of my mind is these birds are no longer feeling any pain. I was able to end their suffering and give them...Read more

George to Louisville Zoo - A New Life

Story via Volunteer Ruth Guerin : On Monday, June 6, my husband and I took George, the grey phase eastern screech owl to Louisville zoo. George is blind in his left eye, and I had been working with him since January 1, in my home. We met the people in the avian department that would be taking care of him during his 30 day isolation period, and also, the women in the Metazoo, which is their education center. George will live in a nicely painted, glass walled enclosure with lots of perching areas and boxes. He will also have a red phased roomie named Phoenix. George will be on the glove for...Read more

Intake #02252018BAEA Creance 5/16/2018

This is a video demonstrating a common technique we utilize called creance flying. This allows us to condition our birds back to full strength (or close to it), so they can be released back into the wild as healthy strong birds! Here we are creance flying our adult bald eagle that had been admitted with a broken right humerus. In order to be releasable this bird must fly a decent amount of flights, take the full line, all while not getting tired. Enjoy! To view the video CLICK HERE , (or the little thumbnail to the left of the text). To view the bird's profile CLICK HERE .Read more
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Setting Records and Finding Homes

We are always disappointed when we cannot heal an injured raptor to the point that it can be returned to the wild. But this is an exciting time for Soarin' Hawk as we have been able to find homes for a record number of birds already this year - 9! In 2018 so far we have found homes for birds as close as the Blandford Nature Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan and as far away as the Phoenix Zoo! Other placements this year are: the Talon Trust in Evansville, Indiana; the Louisville Zoo; the St. Louis Zoo; Brookgreen Gardens and Zoo in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina; and the National Aquarium in...Read more

9 Species of Raptors in ICU this week!

What a variety of raptors are hospitalized in our ICU today! We have 11 birds representing 9 species and this is not our busy season! Spring and summer typically quadruple the number of injured and orphaned raptors we receive and provide care for. Since Soarin' Hawk is primarily volunteer run, we always welcome new volunteers for a variety of opportunities including ICU. 1. A Bald Eagle: Recovering from a fractured wing. He had orthopedic surgery and is now getting Physical Therapy three times a week under anesthesia. 2. A Snowy Owl: We hope to release her next week! 3. A Great Horned Owl:...Read more

Eagle Receiving Physical Therapy [Tales from ICU]

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Fractures and Euthanasia

“We had to euthanize this raptor because the fracture was not repairable” … may not make any sense to those outside of raptor rehabilitation. So let us try and explain. The end goal/requirement of wildlife rehabilitation is to release the animal back into the wild. But it must not be released with any physical impairment that would make it either unable to hunt for its own food or be more vulnerable to injury or to a predator. If an animal is not releasable back into the wild we can occasionally place a bird in qualified institution (zoo, etc.) that wants the animal. But there are even...Read more

Imping an Eagle ??? Seriously ???

Imping an eagle...not many understand what that means! Imp: as a noun this word is defined as " a mischievous child or a little devil or demon". But as a verb it means to "mend or repair" and specifically used in falconry to imp is to "graft feathers into a wing". This eagle had extensive feather damage due to feather mites. The mites leave characteristic angular lines of destruction as they damage the feathers, as seen in this first photo. (The feathers that are not damaged are ones that the eagle had replaced since we had treated her for mites.) As you can imagine, this bird could not fly...Read more

Soarin' Hawk Has a New ICU!

Soarin’ Hawk now has an ICU (intensive care unit) for extremely ill and injured raptors. Historically, the extremely ill were taken care of in volunteers’ homes. Though the people did a great job of caring for the birds, it was not ideal. Each bird would need to be put in a cage and transported for veterinary rechecks and minor procedures, which adds stress to an already sick wild animal. We could not afford to buy a scale for each volunteer to monitor the birds’ weight as well as to weigh the food the animal was being fed. A centralized facility where all the birds can be in the same room...Read more

Fractures and Euthanasia

“We had to euthanize this raptor because the fracture was not repairable” … may not make any sense to those outside of raptor rehabilitation. So let us try and explain. The end goal/requirement of wildlife rehabilitation is to release the animal back into the wild. But it must not be released with any physical impairment that would make it either unable to hunt for its own food or be more vulnerable to injury or to a predator. If an animal is not releasable back into the wild we can occasionally place a bird in qualified institution (zoo, etc.) that wants the animal. But there are even...Read more

From the Clinic

There are 3 blood parasites that affect birds. There are some human blood parasites, but fortunately they are not something we typically have to worry about in the United States. This article will cover Leucocytozoon spp. Leucocytozoon spp. commonly infects both white and red blood cells. The red arrows in the first image point to examples of a lymphocyte (white blood cell) infected with Leucocytozoon spp. The yellow arrows in the second image point to examples of normal looking lymphocytes. You can see how difficult it would be to identify the kind of cell that is infected on the left...Read more

Please welcome Katherine Tate to the Soarn Hawk Veterinary Team

Please welcome Katherine Tate, B.S.,RVT. to the Soarin’ Hawk veterinary team! Katherine joined us in June of 2017. We had just started talking about the need for a vet tech when we received an email from Katherine inquiring if we had any openings. After reading her bio, we felt that the stars had aligned. We met shortly thereafter, offered her a job, and she accepted! Kat’s story: When I first started college 7 years ago I went into human medicine. I thought I wanted to be a Physician's Assistant. After 3 years, I realized that human medicine wasn't for me, but animal medicine was. I had to...Read more

from the Clinic

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Walmart Associates make a difference.

Just a few weeks ago, 10 associates from the Walmart Distribution Center in Auburn IN dedicated their weekend in service to Soarin' Hawk. In response to our front page call for "more fish" they spent the weekend restocking our supply of fish while enjoying a day outdoors. Not only did they bring inthe fish, Walmart has a program that provides grants to non-profits, based on the number of hours that their associates donate to the community. The 83 hours contributed by these hardworking folks will provide Soarin' Hawk with a lot of fish and $1,000. Thank you Walmart associates and the Walmart...Read more