Osprey Returns Home After Hail Injury
May 8th 2017, brought severe weather to Colorado. Wind, rain, and large hail pummeled many areas of the front range. As people arrived home from work, they started to find birds injured from the hail. Cooper’s Hawks arrived with bones broken from the impact of the hail. A Red-tailed Hawk was found unconscious in a pool of water with cuts around her eye and severe head trauma. Swainson’s Hawks with bruising and swelling around their eyes were found downed in neighborhoods. An Osprey was found downed at an asphalt plant. As her mate watched, the Osprey was picked up by Birds of Prey Foundation staff. There was so much swelling around her right eye we wondered if the eye was even intact! She was given fluids, pain medication, and then was left alone to rest and keep stress to a minimum. Over the course of the next few days we continued to give her pain medication and even a little bit of fish. The swelling around her eye finally started to go away and we could see the was intact and normal. There was an added sense of urgency in her case because we knew her mate was waiting for her. More than a week after she was admitted we put her into a small outdoor cage. She began eating on her own and flying short distances. As the final step, we moved her into a large flight cage and were relieved when she opened her long wings and took to the air! Two days later she was released in a quiet park in view of where she was found.