D32 Admission Date: 8 June 2019
Location of Rescue: in the trout stream near the Decorah Fish Hatchery
Cause of Admission / Condition: Nest disturbance / black flies
Patient Status: Current Patient

What an eventful week! On Saturday, the other eaglet – D32 that was rescued on Friday 7 June – from the nest near the Decorah Fish Hatchery was transported to SOAR. D32 had excellent care on Friday evening and Saturday morning from Raptor Resource Project board member and veterinarian Laura.

D32 spent several days evading searchers before spotted hunkered down in the trout stream.

D32 is definitely impacted by black fly / buffalo gnat bites and is emaciated and dehydrated. As happens with birds in poor condition D32 has feather lice. Feather lice may crawl on you, but only in search of feathers.

leg bonesThe biggest concern for D32 is that the tibiotarsus in the right leg is broken just above the ankle. Kay consulted with SOAR veterinarians and all agreed that pinning the bones together was not an option.

The only option, and it is a long-shot, is to align and stabilize the bones while D32 is under anesthesia. Surgery is scheduled to align the bones and apply an external stabilizer – like a cast.

Then we all wait.

D32 is on antibiotics and is eating cut up food.


13 June 2019
Kay assisted Drs. Riordan and Struve with surgery to straighten and stabilize D32's right tibiotarsus. The stabilization had to be from the outside (external) as both veterinarians agreed that there was no way to attach anything to the tiny piece of bone next to the joint. D32 did have an open owie near the break and a very tiny corner of bone was exposed. The leg was not stinky or pussy. The owie was cleaned, the bone straightened... then covered with an antibiotic pad and the leg "casted" in such a way to stabilize the bone but not be so tight as to reduce circulation to the toes. D32 will be in this cast for four weeks, then an x-ray check to determine if the two pieces of bone are forming a good union. All the veterinarians consulted on this think this is a long-shot, but a long-shot they were willing to take.

Now D32 needs to be kept calm, comfortable, and provided with cut-up food as standing on food to rip and tear is not something s/he needs to be doing now.

Now we wait.

D32 cast

D32 sporting his cast after surgery. Picture 13 June 2019.