[Bristol-Birds] Confusion over banded Golden Eagle in Shady Valley made some hold their breath.

  • From: "Wallace Coffey" <jwcoffey@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Bristol-birds" <bristol-birds@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 10 Feb 2012 16:19:04 -0500

                       Al Cecere, President of the AEF (at right) released a 
Golden Eagle
                                     in Shady Valley during November of last 

Some held their breath when it was first thought that a Golden Eagle
photo captured by Todd Eastin in Shady Valley in January had a
bird band on its leg.

Was this the same bird released in the valley after having been 
rehabbed at the University of Tennessee Vet School, brought to the
valley, banded and released ?

Well, as far as we know, it was never determined that Eastin's photo
captured Golden Eagle this year had a band on it.  Just a bit
of confusion over his remarks about his photographed bird was a
juvenile bird because it had a white "band" on the tail in other 

On 15 Nov 2011, in Shady Valley, the American Eagle Foundation 
released a rehabbed Golden Eagle which had been brought to their
facility at Pigeon Fore, TN with serious injuries.  It was an immature
bird and banded before release.

In 2010, it was accidentally but legally caught in two steel leg-hold 
traps which were baited with deer meat. At first, the eagle caught 
a talon in his left foot; then, struggling to free itself, the eagle fell 
into the second trap which tore into its breast. Struggling against 
both traps, the eagle sustained more and more damage to its chest. 

When it was discovered, the eagle was taken to the University of 
Tennessee School of Veterinary Medicine and treated for its injuries. 
The talon had to be amputated, and the eagle was then taken to the 
American Eagle Foundation for rehabilitation.

Shady Valley was chosen as the release site for the injured Golden
Eagle directly because of two very important influences:

    1.  The Bristol Bird Club's East Tennessee Golden Eagle Group 
made history Tuesday (Feb. 22, 2011), when BBC members Todd Eastin 
and Lynn Eastin, captured an excellent photo of a Golden Eagle on Iron 
Mountain in Shady Valley, TN -- Johnson County. That became the first 
photo of the species for Shady Valley and maybe for Johnson County. 
The Bristol Bird Club's East Tennessee Golden Eagle Group began 
monitoring in the mountains of Northeast Tennessee on Feb 17, 2011 
and the eagle was detected five days later. It is the first Golden Eagle 
known to have been photographed in Tennessee as part of a research
project to better understand their distribution in the Appalachians.  
Biologists felt it was the best site they knew to release a Golden Eagle 
after it was rehabbed because Golden Eagles were recorded there.

    2. It was also an area where John and Lorrie Shumate, BBC members,
had twice seen wintering birds.  So November was a good time to release it 
because that is the time of Golden Eagle migration into the Southern
Appalachians and also the bird would have many winter months ahead
to get stronger before it migrated back to Canada this coming spring.
Wallace Coffey
Bristol, TN

JPEG image

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  • » [Bristol-Birds] Confusion over banded Golden Eagle in Shady Valley made some hold their breath. - Wallace Coffey