Audubon releases young bald eagle back to the wild

Lynda White, Audubon Center for Birds of Prey Eaglewatch Coordinator retired recently after 14 years of dedication to educate, protect and care for wildlife. As her final act she was honored to release the 450th rehabilitated Bald Eagle back into the Florida skies at Lakeland.

With tears in her eyes, after tossing the seven-pound male eaglet into the air, White said, "Theres nothing like it, it's the best feeling in the world. I think by being able to have been given a chance to do a live eagle webcam project as a partnership with Audubon Center for Birds of Prey and in 1999, back then it was cutting edge. To bring live streaming video of Bald Eagles raising their young into homes gave people the opportunity to learn about and understand why they are so special."

The fledgling Bald Eagle was rescued on April 3 of this year near it's nest on a golf course. It was transported to Audubon Center for Birds of Prey in Maitland. The young eagle was suffering from Avian Pox, a viral infection spread by mosquitoes but has since recovered from the infection and has perfected its flying skills. Now he will be spreading his wings in freedom as he soars back into the wild.

Audubon Center for Birds of Prey CBOP Founding ~

Founded in 1979 in Maitland, FL, the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey has treated over 12,000 injured or orphaned birds of prey (raptors), releasing more than 40% of these former patients back into the wild. The Center handles the largest volume of eagles, owls, falcons, hawks, and kites east of the Mississippi River--averaging more than 650 admissions, or injured or orphaned birds of prey, each year—and is a leader among all North American rehabilitation centers for specialized eagle care.

The Center also provides environmental education programming to over 20,000 local students, teachers, and visitors annually, while promoting a culture of conservation towards birds of prey and their habitats. A nationally renowned research institute, the Center is an influential voice in the ongoing fight to save endangered and threatened birds of prey.

Audubon Center for Birds of Prey History ~

On June 14, 1979, Audubon staff member Doris Mager climbed into an inactive Bald Eagle nest in Central Florida. She stayed there for six days and five nights, to raise awareness of the plight of the Bald Eagle and to raise funds to build the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey. The Center opened on October 19, 1979 in Maitland, thanks to a generous donation from the Baldwin Family in loving memory of Madalyn Baldwin. Sixty-six sick, injured and baby raptors were admitted for care in 1979. Today, the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey treats nearly 700 raptors of 21 species annually.
Source ~ Audubon Florida

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