Bald Eagle Rescued in Connecticut After Collision With 18-Wheeler
It looks as though an American bald eagle is going to be "A-okay" despite a nasty collision with a tractor-trailer on a Connecticut highway earlier this week.
According to A Place Called Hope, a licensed wildlife rehabilitation center in Killingworth, CT, the female eagle was so laser-focused on some delicious roadkill along I-95 in New Haven, that when she flew down with her nearly 7-foot wingspan to grab the meal, the horn from an oncoming car startled her.
As she attempted to make her escape, the bald eagle flew directly into the windshield of an 18-wheeler.
As one would imagine, the driver of the truck, Scott Burke of Southington-based company SRS National, was very shaken up from the incident, but as you can see ion the video footage below, there was simply no chance for him to avoid the collision.
After flying into the truck's windshield, the stunned eagle was able to cling onto the side of the truck's cab, until Burke was able to safely bring his rig to a complete stop about 1,000 feet away.
"It is just amazing nobody was hurt and that this eagle was not run over after the impact," said Burke after reviewing the dash cam footage that captured the whole thing. He went on to say that it just happened so fast, and was one of the most frightening things he;s encountered in 25 years of being a professional driver.
When state police arrived on the scene, Trooper Ryan Burke, Trooper Roman Gray and DEEP Officer Alex Blackwell teamed up to briefly close down the busy highway in order to rescue the bird from any further harm. Then, Officer Blackwell reportedly "wasted no time as she rushed off to A Place Called Hope, fearing the worst."
The folks at the wildlife rehab facility said that while the eagle was clearly in shock, she miraculously didn't have any obvious breaks. X-rays were then done a short time later at Pets' Friend Animal Hospital in Guilford, confirming that she didn't suffer any fractures, but believe it or now, the x-ray did reveal that this eagle had been shot in the past.
As of this writing A Place Called Hope reports that the eagle is "doing well, even eating and she has been cleared to be moved to an aviary space to finish out her recovery process. We hope to move her along at a fast pace due to the time of year, and the fact that nesting season is upon her. It is imperative she return to her mate and the courting/nesting process promptly to continue on in her life's journey."
Thankfully, her rescuers believe that the eagle will make a full recovery, and that Scott Burke was able to bring his 18-wheeler to safety while avoiding any injury of his own. All's well that end's well on I-95 -- at least for this story's sake.
Here's the dashcam footage of the collision:
Click through the gallery for some more pictures of the bald eagle and her recovery courtesy of A Place Called Hope: