Bald eagle rescued from Missouri River doing better

Wednesday, October 2, 2013 | 6:27 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — With no leads on what harmed the bald eagle rescued from the Missouri River in late September, the bird's future is uncertain.

"He's eating very well," Christa Moore said, the public relations worker at the Raptor Rehabilitation Project. "He's definitely more active. Not as active as a bald eagle should be, but at this point, he's doing fine."

The bird was brought in on Sept. 22 by Roger Giles, who was out fishing when he saw the eagle struggling to swim. Giles rescued it from the water and brought it to the MU College of Veterinary Medicine.

Raptor Rehabilitation Project members found no injuries to the eagle, but the bird was underweight and lethargic. It still has not been determined what is wrong with the bird, Moore said.

"We are running test after test, which takes a while to get accurate results," she said.

Moore said when the bird is cleared for release, it would be a public event "unless it's deemed too stressful for the bird."

However, should members of the project decide that the bird is unfit to survive on its own, it could become an education bird to be used by the Raptor Rehabilitation Project or another organization or humanely euthanized, Moore said.

"We will do everything we can to help him get back into the wild where he belongs," she said.

Supervising editor is Allie Hinga.

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