Slow Down For Eagles

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  • Though outstanding hunters, Eagles have a very high failure rate
    Eagles are very big with a wide wing span. Bigger is not always better when it comes to hunting. A smaller lighter male eagle can often have the edge over a larger heavier female eagle. For all their skills and amazing physical prowess, it usually takes many, many unsuccessful attempts before they finally capture their prey. Their hunts take longer and exert great energy, but their larger prey provides a meal that lasts them longer as well. They do not need to eat daily.
  • Combined with shrinking habitats, they often feast on roadkill.
    It takes a lot of effort to hunt for food especially in a limited habitat among much competition and obstructions. Roadkill is a lot easier to hunt. Eagles are opportunistic predators, they will take what they can get with the least amount of energy expended.
Slow Down For Eagles
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An Eagle with Full Crop

  • A large meal increases the weight of Eagle
    Just as a pilot must track and balance weight on an airplane, so do birds. Their flight is dependent on a healthy weight and incredible physical fitness. It does not take much weight to throw off their optimal weight and balance for flight.
  • Extra weight creates added difficulty to resume flight and return to cover
    A large meal can weigh down a bird considerably. Not only does the added weight from a big meal make flying harder, it also lessens their incentive for flight. Already satiated, their will and attitude to work for food drops.
Slow Down For Eagles
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Eagles Are Large

  • Please slow down as a large, heavy Eagle needs time and distance to get off the road
    If you see birds, even smaller ones in the road, it is a good idea to slow down. If there are many birds eating roadkill, it may not be possible to see an eagle among them until it is too late.
  • Unlike smaller birds, Eagles cannot dart away from vehicles.
    For those in urban areas, you may be used to just driving along with birds in front of you in the road because most smaller ones are able to get out of the way. Small birds with small wing spans can flap away quickly. A Eagle and some other larger birds cannot. While driving in wildlife areas, please keep an eye out for objects in the road and slow down in order to better evaluate the situation and act accordingly.

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Video Transcript

00:00:16.010 --> 00:00:22.820
she had a really really big dinner last
night and and because of that now I

00:00:22.820 --> 00:00:27.890
always want make this point it's
extremely important eagles are large

00:00:27.890 --> 00:00:33.470
eagles are very heavy eagles are very
slow to get off the ground and if

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they've had a large meal like she did
sometimes they'll eat so much food

00:00:37.820 --> 00:00:42.020
can't even fly and that's kind of
situation that she was in and because of

00:00:42.020 --> 00:00:49.820
that when do we see birds on the highway
or and don't just assume they can fly

00:00:49.820 --> 00:00:54.680
away and the number one injury to Eagles
here in in Utah is Eagles being hit by

00:00:54.680 --> 00:00:58.309
cars and she was certainly in a
situation that could have been the case

00:00:58.309 --> 00:01:04.600
but fortunately she was not and so when
you see birds on the highway slow down

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sometimes you you have to come to a stop
and let them walk off the road because

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they've had too much dinner or too much

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Got a crop full of food that's number one

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eating dinner and somebody won't slow
down to let him get off the road

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Martin: Hi Kiddo.
Susan: huge bulging crop full of food

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Definitely some internal there's a lot of blood in his mouth and that kind of stuff

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But I'm not feeling... okay, let's see what we got here

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Feels good...

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Okay...that's good...

00:02:04.180 --> 00:02:06.180
...that's solid...

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I don't feel breaks

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Yeah, I know, you've had a really bad day, haven't you kiddo...

00:02:17.900 --> 00:02:20.900

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okay I'm not feeling... oh, I know, It's all right I get bit every day, that's just normal...

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Susan: That one got smacked really hard

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Martin: yeah, he's definitely got a pretty bad concussion

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he's pretty unhappy but we'll get him
put in a safe place and

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let's just see if he recovers...

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okay just received a cardboard box it's
at a an injured eagle it was hit like by

00:03:07.700 --> 00:03:16.310
a vehicle over on State Road 20 and the utah division of wildlife resources brought him to me

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so we'll see we've got I have no idea what we're dealing with here

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They said it's a golden eagle we'll find out here real quick

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okay, what do we got in here...

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yeah it's a Golden

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Hey kiddo

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You having a bad day sweetie?

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You're fighting good, that's a great thing

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There we are

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Hey sweetheart

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yeah...pretty little girl...

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Susan: is that something that be stitched?

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Yeah, we'll just let her sit for the night and see where we're at...

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Often times it will heal itself up

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wings let's see that we're dealing with here...

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Wing feels good..

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yeah I know you can bite, that's all right, I don't care

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Susan: lost the tail?

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Martin: Tail feathers have been pulled out. Susan: oh my gosh

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Martin: Missing all but one tail feather

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they're all gone they've all been ripped
out, there's nothing there

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Susan: That's doesn't happen just getting hit.

00:05:03.240 --> 00:05:06.400
Martin: No, that doesn't happen getting hit by a car.

00:05:06.620 --> 00:05:10.820
That happens when people
find injured eagles on the side of the road

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and they want to collect the

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Let me tell you how this works...on the black market...

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tail feathers from a dead eagle
are about a hundred dollars a piece.

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If you could rip the feathers out of the
live eagle

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they can be worth as much as a thousand dollars a piece.

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So an eagle has 12 tail feathers

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and so basically this guy right here,
the person walked off with

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eleven thousand dollars in tail feathers and

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and just rip it right out of this poor
animal's tail

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If you can imagine someone taking a pair of pliers and ripping our each of your fingernails

00:05:56.100 --> 00:05:59.560
that's pretty much what they did to this poor eagle.

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so that's that's one of the problems we
have here and that's it

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Nothing there

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All the feathers have been completely removed, haven't been broken.

00:06:09.360 --> 00:06:12.420
So... this poor thing...

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Doctor: What kind of parasites do they see?

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Martin: Father lice extensively a lot
of feather lice especially on eagles

00:06:33.840 --> 00:06:34.960
Doctor: What do you treat with?

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actually the same thing you treat
parakeets with just just the cage spray

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Wipes them out really really welll

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Doctor: Tapeworm?

00:06:48.640 --> 00:06:55.200
We don't treat for that unless we find their sick

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Their in the wild this is the normal diet this is the normal stuff