This is a follow-up to a previous post, “Your Brokenness is Beautiful”
Thank you all for keeping the bald eagle alive in your hearts these past weeks. I know it made a difference. I know he felt it.
So many of you have reached out asking about him. After an impressive fight for his life, he died from his injuries at a rehabilitation facility in Vancouver.
The eagle received excellent care at Salt Spring wildlife rescue. Given how skinny he was, and the dirt embedded in his wings, it seemed he’d been grounded for some time when he landed in my yard, possibly weeks.
They ran tests, hydrated, fed, and stabilized him. He couldn’t stand or walk, but there were no visible injuries. *Blood tests ruled out lead poisoning.
The eagle was moved to one of the best raptor rehabilitation facilities in British Columbia, Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Facility (O.W.L).
He was doing okay, but still partially paralyzed. They pampered and nurtured him, stretched his wings every day, and he was eating well. There was hope of rehabilitation and an eventual release. But something else was going on; after a bad bout of diarrhea, he died overnight in their care.
Many eagles suffer head trauma from being hit by cars. But because he wasn’t near traffic, O.W.L. said he likely had a fight with another eagle. March is the height of eagle mating season, and it’s not uncommon for fighting males to get seriously injured.
The night before my eagle encounter, I was feeling battered and bruised, like the fight had gone out of me.
I told a friend I needed a shamanic healing session, which always helps when my wounds feel mysteriously ancient. Shamanic work uses the symbolism of nature and ancient ritual to retrieve soul-parts that are lost. It restores personal power, and helps us find animal allies to support us on the next leg of our journey.
It turned out the shamanic session came to me, literally dropping from the sky. I take this as a great reminder to us all, of the power of asking for what we need!
Since my eagle encounter, I’ve felt those sharp eyes with me every time I need them. When my confidence wanes, or if I feel defeated or sad about the state of humanity, I picture him staring me down.
You can use this medicine too. The eagle-eye image above is meant to help invoke that great warrior spirit, whenever we need it most.
As the rehab vet said, “eagles always fight to the end.”
I think we all need focus right now. Distraction and drama are at an all-time high. If we’re not careful with our energy, we can get drawn into arguments over trivial things, or mindlessly compete for a slice of the pie. The pie doesn’t matter; the world is waking up to this truth. Love, truth, and seeing ourselves in each other, is what matters. We do not need to fight and compete to the death–we need to stay on target.
Do not let the darkness of this world distract you from the work you’re here to do.
This week I had the chance to visit O.W.L. and get a peek into the work they do. It was fascinating to learn they preserve dead raptors, and certain groups can apply to use them for education, taxidermy and other purposes. First Nations communities often take the dead eagles and use the feathers in sacred ceremonies. I like to think our eagle’s feathers are being cherished in this way.
As part of their open house this week, O.W.L. released a rehabilitated bald eagle back into the wild, very similar to this video below from 2014.
In my mind, this is our eagle being released. Free from pain and suffering, he returns to the wild mystery; he is released in death, the ultimate healing.
*Bald eagles hunt and scavenge for their food. They often feed on carcasses and gut piles left in fields by hunters that are riddled with lead fragments, and the fish or waterfowl they catch often contain lead weights. This is deadly for raptor populations. Please help “get the lead out” by educating others on the dangers of lead ammunition and lead fishing tackle.
Was this update helpful today? If so, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.