Bald eagle rescued from Revelstoke recovering in Kamloops

By Chad Klassen
December 20, 2016 - 5:11pm

KAMLOOPS — It was a heroic rescue with a truly Canadian touch.

A juvenile bald eagle was found near a river in Revelstoke on Friday, unable to fly with a broken wing.

With the help of locals and a pair of RCMP officers, however, the eagle was saved and transported to the BC Wildlife Park where it's getting the care it needs to recover.

WATCH: Full report by Chad Klassen

It was a heroic rescue with a truly canadian touch. Using a hockey stick and piece of salmon, RCMP officers and locals in Revelstoke were able to save a juvenile bald eagle. 

"The hockey stick was the big thing, and the salmon," says Cpl. Thomas Blakney from the Revelstoke RCMP. "From our understanding, Illy had been there between seven to 10 days they figured. Once we put the fish down, he would move to that spot, and we just coerced him out with food."

Unable to fly with a broken wing, Illy was transported to Kamloops to the B.C. Wildlife Park, where it's getting the care it needs to recover.

Staff at the park are drawing blood from Illy, who, when he arrived, was anemic with an extremely low red blood cell count. 

"It's a major injury for him. When he came in, he was emaciated because he hadn't been eating, likely due to the fact he had a broken wing," says Animal Health Technologist at the B.C. Wildlife Park Sean Daley. "A broken wing for these animals is huge. If they can't fly, they can't find food, they can't hunt, and they basically can't live in the wild."

He's in a good place now, at the Fawcett Family Wildlife Health Centre, where he's getting 24 hour care, and help from two fellow eagles, receiving blood from a mature bald eagle and a golden eagle. 

"His blood showed that he wasn't in a position to keep on living. Without that transfusion, it's unlikely he'd be able to make any kind of recovery," says Daley. 

After a blood test on Tuesday, Illy's count is up and that's a good thing, giving staff hope that in the next few weeks, he could be released back into the wild up in Revelstoke. 

Will there be a white Christmas in Kamloops?