|Two bald eagles interlocked, injured and hanging from a tree in Tuckerton, NJ. |
Photo by Ben Wurst.
The Endangered and Nongame Species Program received a report on February 18th that two adult eagles were injured and hanging from a tree in Tuckerton. With some help from an AC Electric company truck with a cherry picker on it, Ben Wurst, Habitat Program Manager went up to try to free the birds.
One eagle was alive but the other had unfortunately died. The survivor was banded and recorded as a female that was came from a nest near Merrill Creek reservoir in 2008.
Probably, the two had fought over territory and fell from the air into tree branches. The dead eagle had a "death grip" on the surviving eagle. Without help, they both were likely to have died in the tree.
The bird was taken to Mercer County Wildlife Center to be checked. Sadly, its leg that was in the grip of the other eagle was badly injured and the bird showed signs of frostbite damage due to not being able to move and fly. After 5 days, the bird was euthanized at Tri-State Bird Rescue because the fracture and frostbite made her unlikely to survive in the wild and eagles in general do not like being in captivity.
Helmet-Cam video of Ben working to save the eagle.