Hawk, Hawk, Vulture, Eagle

Four Critter Tales

  • Cooper’s Hawk Not Quite Released

    Martin introduced a Cooper’s Hawk that he planned to release. In chambers, the hawk seemed ready, however after released in a more open area, Martin noticed the hawk was still not flying quite right. He brought him back and after a couple more weeks, the hawk was released was again, fully recovered.

  • Arrival of Sharp-Shinned Hawk

    This hawk was brought to Martin one night after having been caught up in fishing line. Martin examined the hawk, noticed some problems. The hawk stayed for awhile for some TLC and was released back to the wild.

  • A quick peek at the Halloween Vulture

    Susan takes a quick peek in at the recovering Turkey Vulture from a good distance away. As the birds recover, they are left alone as much as possible so they stay calm and do not get agitated and reinjure themselves.

  • Martin and Scout on the job!

    This is a snippet from an educational program Martin and his birds provided to the Las Vegas Audubon chapter. With Scout on his arm, Martin shares information about eagles and his an experience in hunting with his one of his eagles.

Slow Down for Eagles

In this video, we try to stress the need to be alert for eagles on the road. We show three of instances of eagles that were hit by vehicles and Martin discusses this problem, why it happens and how to help prevent it.

For more information, please visit our Guides page to download materials for sharing and classroom use.

Sick and Near Starved Eagle

A very thin Golden Eagle arrived to our rehab facility

This Golden Eagle arrived at early evening. After a thorough check over, Martin found no phyical problems so moved him to a chamber and prepared a meal for him.

The eagle struggled to swallow the meal and was very weak in Martin arms. There was not much improvement during the second feeding at 3am.

Come morning, the eagle showed clear signs of recovery, moving around the chamber. Martin cut up a rabbit carcass for him and left him to feed himself.

This eagle recovered fully and was released by a teacher during one of Martin’s school wildlife education programs at the Parowan Gap.

Eagle Arrived Unconsious

A very sick young Golden Eagle was brought to Martin

This eagle arrived at night, as weak as could be. With doubts for recovery, Martin immediately began care. As the eagle struggled to even swallow, she received around the clock small feedings.

After about 24 hours with Martin’s care, the eagle showed some signs of perking up. After a day of just sitting still, when Martin arrived to feed her, she moved away from him.

On day three, she finally began to eat on her own, taking food from a rabbit’s carcass which is a fairly common meal for eagles.

She had a long road to recovery, being left mostly alone to regain her strength and gain weight.

About a month later, on release day, she weighed near a whopping 13 pounds and was very ready to return to the wild.

This eagle was released from C-Overlook in Cedar City by Martin. Because she was so big, he wanted to handle her himself.

Eagle’s Turkey Hunt FAIL

A sub-adult male golden eagle wedged between a metal fence and cinderblock wall at a home near the foothills in Parowan had been stuck for several days without food and water while suffering because of an unusually hot June. Fortunately the home owner returned just in the nick of time to find the eagle stuck in his back yard and called the SWF. Martin ran out immediately and was able to remove the eagle from the fence, brought it back to our rescue center and started its treatment for starvation, dehydration and minor scrapes and bruises. The eagle is now doing well and has been released back to the wild!

Eagle Ate Too Much to Fly

Martin and Susan were called out to the highway to rescue a Golden Eagle that was having trouble flying. After capturing the bird, Martin saw her crop was stuffed full. Since she was otherwise healthy, his first diagnosis was that she simply ate so much she could not get over a fence along the side of the highway.

For more information about Eagles along the highways, please click here.

After a night at the Rehab center, and much reduced crop size, she was released back the wild.

Golden Eagle Hit by Wind Turbine

In April we received a beautiful sub-adult male golden eagle that had been injured at the windfarm near Milford Utah. Its injuries were extensive with a severe concussion. Because of the concussion, it appeared to be blind in the right eye. It was unable to stand and we were afraid it may have had a spinal cord injury. Fortunately that was not the case.

After a week of intensive care, tube feeding fluids and medications the eagle slowly started to recover. Day by day we watched its progress from laying helplessly on its side to barely being able to stand, to walking around its chamber. Then one morning the eagle was sitting on a perch about two feet off the ground. That was a really great day.

His vision fully recovered and a couple of weeks later he started to fly to the upper perches in the flight chamber. After recovering to full health and strength I had the personal privilege to stand at the top of the mountain overlooking Cedar City and release that beautiful eagle back to the sky.

Frequently when we have an eagle ready to be returned to the wild we will seek out individuals or organizations that would like to participate in an eagle release and allow them to release the eagle back to the sky. On this occasion the organization I had contacted to participle in the eagle release did not return my phone call in a timely manner. The eagle was ready to go and as always is the case, the animal’s welfare comes first.

My Own Personal Eagle

Martin discusses his friendship with Scout the rescued Golden Eagle who is now one of our Wildlife Ambassadors.

Martin continues to travel throughout the west providing wildlife programs accompanied by his devoted companion, Scout.

In this Video: My Own Personal Eagle

A quote from Martin’s book, Healer of Angels:

“One of my greatest childhood fantasies was the desire to create a personal friendship with a wild eagle. I found myself with a love and fascination for these powerful creatures.”

Martin introduces Scout, a 17 year old rescued wild Golden Eagle. A farmer in Wyoming was threatening to shoot Scout so Martin went up to rescue him. Eagles are very special to him ever since first working with them back around the age of sixteen.

Martin noticed many characteristics about Golden Eagles like their intelligence, patience and personality. They could be silly, mischievous or serious. Mostly still, that they were wild animals and need to be respected as such.

It was a long dream of his to not only rescue and return Eagles to the wild, but to have a Golden Eagle for Falconry and to be friends with. It is a very rare opportunity to say that one of his dearest friends is a full grown wild eagle. The relationship he enjoys with Scout is a life’s work and has been an extremely complicated goal.

The first step to Eagle Falconer is to be a falconer. Martin lays out the first half of process:

  • take a very difficult written test at local fish and game office
  • get equipment inspected
  • do a two year apprenticeship
  • wait five more years before you can apply for a master’s license
  • get two years experience flying eagles before you can get a permit to fly eagles, you cannot fly eagles without a permit
  • a way around that is to work as a wildlife rehabilitator who specializes in eagles
  • apprentice under a eagle falconer



That is just the first half of the process. Falconry is one the most highly regulated field sports in the world. Eagle Falconry is especially demanding and time consuming. A good hawk will will catch more rabbits than a eagle.

Scout is his friend and his hunting companion. Scout is also a Wildlife Ambassador who accompanies Martin to educational programs throughout the Southwest. Scout truly helps educate the public about eagles and so is a marvelous teacher.

Martin is often asked how the friendship developed and how it works. He says is goes back to the very first days of the falconry training. After rescuing Scout, they returned home to Utah. The start of the falconry program is a process called “manning”.

Martin first goal was to show Scout he was a nice guy. They say together in a quiet dark place. Over time, Martin soothed and comforted the eagle and kept food near him. They sat for three days and nights until Scout felt comfortable enough to eat. He was then moved to a larger chamber outside where the process continued using food as a motivator. The way to a eagle’s heart is through his stomach.

Gradually, day by day, food is given from further and further away. First inside, then outside, using a whistle and holding food out for the eagle to come from a perch. After practice moving farther and farther away, the eagle was taken out the desert and let free. The hope would be the return at the sound of the whistle and the desire for food. A terrifying time for a falconer.

Scout is wild, flies free, hunts and can leave anytime he wants. He returns because of food and kind treatment. Scout is the hunter and Martin is his dog. Since Martin is a good dog, Scout keeps him.

They have been together fifteen years and share a daily routine that maintains their relationship.

The falconry process is the basis and development of their friendship.

Falconry, to Martin, is not a hobby. It is truly a life’s skill and life’s dedication.

About Martin Tyner

At age twelve, Martin Tyner started caring for the sick, injured and orphaned creatures in his home town of Simi Valley, CA. At age nineteen, Tyner was hired as curator of birds of prey at Busch Gardens, CA. He worked in the movie and television industry training big cats, elephants, primates, sea mammals and raptors.

Martin Tyner is a federally licensed falconer, eagle falconer, wildlife rehabilitator, wildlife propagator, and wildlife and environmental educator. He has been providing wildlife and environmental programs throughout the western United States, to schools, scouts and community groups for over forty years.

Martin Tyner is the founder of the Southwest Wildlife Foundation, which is a 501(c)(3) non-profit wildlife rescue, wildlife and environmental education organization. With the help of his golden eagle, Bud, they received a donation of 22.6 acres of beautiful, canyon property from Utah Power/Scottish Power for the development of a permanent wildlife rescue facility and a nature park for the children of Utah.

Golden Eagle Scout’s Project | World Class Eagle Flight Chamber

Martin has been caring for Eagles and Raptors for over 50 years! His recovery and rehabilitation efforts would be greatly improved by the construction of a large flight chamber measuring 100 by 50 feet. Such a World Class Flight Chamber would allow large birds to circle around and get the exercise they need before returning to the wild.

Additionally, an inner structure would allow for visitors to view the recovering birds in flight and provide valuable education for the public.

We welcome all who would like to Get Involved!