Bald Eagle #22-1462

June 1, 2022
August 12, 2022
Rescue Location
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Cause of Admission/Condition
Former Patient
Patient photo

Last Updated Jump to patient updates

On June 1, the Center admitted a juvenile Bald Eagle from Virginia Beach. A homeowner found the eagle in their yard and noticed that it was on the ground all day. Concerned that the eagle was injured, the homeowner contacted permitted wildlife rehabilitator Lisa Barlow, who sent another rehabilitator to rescue the eagle. The eagle was later transported to the Wildlife Center.

On admission, the eagle was alert and feisty. Dr. Olivia, one of the Center’s veterinary interns, examined the bird and found that it was dehydrated, had a heavy burden of feather lice, and was in poor body condition, but did not have any injuries. Blood work revealed that the eagle was mildly anemic. The exact cause of the eagle’s condition is unknown, though it’s possible that the bird was orphaned. The veterinary team immediately administered fluids to correct its dehydration and started the eagle on a course of anti-fungal medication to prevent aspergillosis, a common type of fungal infection in Bald Eagles. They also administered a shot of iron dextran to treat its anemia. The eagle was then placed in the Center’s indoor holding area where it could rest in between treatments.

So far, the eagle has been eating well and its condition appears to be improving, though its prognosis is still guarded. The veterinary team will continue to provide supportive care for this eagle and may move the bird into an outside enclosure soon once its course of medication is complete.

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Patient Updates

On August 12, Dr. Karra and a small group of Wildlife Center staff released Bald Eagles #22-0980 and #22-1462 at Lake Anna State Park for a sizable crowd — about 150 members of the public were in attendance!

#22-0980 was first to be released; Dr. Karra set the bird’s traveling crate on the ground and gently opened the door. Center staff on-site report that the eagle was hesitant to exit the crate at first, but took flight with strong wing beats and circled the release area five times before heading to a nearby tree.

#22-1462 was much quicker to leave the crate! After exiting, it quickly took flight and banked left out of sight.

Photos courtesy of Woody Mallory:

Photos courtesy of Lisa Arthur:

Photo courtesy of Terri Wood:

Watch the moments of release here:

Bald Eagle Release in the News:

Two bald eagles released at Lake Anna State Park, NBC 29

Eagle release @ Lake AnnaB101.5 FM

Bald Eagle #22-0980 and Bald Eagle #22-1462 have been doing well during the past month; both eagles have improved their physical strength and stamina during daily exercise sessions, regularly completing 10-15 passes of the A3 flight pen with proper form, maneuvering, and perching ability. After determining that both of these juvenile eagles were ready for life in the wild, a blood draw was completed on August 8 for pre-release analysis. Results were within normal limits, and both birds were cleared for release in Spotsylvania County, where Bald Eagle #22-0980 was rescued earlier this summer.

Bald Eagle #22-1462 was originally rescued in Virginia Beach, a heavily-urbanized area that may not provide the best possible habitat for a young eagle post-release. After conferring with Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources biologists, the decision was made to release both individuals at Lake Anna State Park.

The double eagle release will take place on Friday, August 12 at 1:00 p.m. Eastern at Lake Anna State Park, Virginia [6800 Lawyers Rd]. The release is open to the public; please let us know if you’re coming by emailing Please indicate the number of people in your party. Those attending the release should plan on parking near Ware Cove picnic area, shelter B.

The Wildlife Center is following all CDC Guidelines and recommendations with regard to SARS-CoV-2. Current data suggest the risk of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in outdoor settings is minimal. In general, fully vaccinated people do not need to wear a mask outdoors. Fully vaccinated people might choose to wear a mask in crowded outdoor settings if they or someone in their household is immunocompromised. Please be respectful and physically distance with those outside of your party.

During the past month, Bald Eagle #22-1462’s condition has continued to improve with treatment. On June 9, the veterinary team moved the eagle to the Center’s A3 flight pen, a large outdoor enclosure where the eagle will have more space as it recovers. By June 30, the eagle had completed its course of fungal medication and blood work revealed that the bird’s anemia had resolved. The rehabilitation team has started exercising the eagle daily to help it build up the strength and stamina needed to return to wild. Currently, the eagle is flying up to 10-15 flight passes during its exercise sessions; the rehabilitation team reports that the bird needs to improve its maneuvering and height before progressing further.