Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) cut a young bald eagle from a volleyball net used to save the bird from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) cut a young bald eagle from a volleyball net used to save the bird from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

VIDEO: B.C. raptor rehab group rescues bald eagle from sewage treatment pond

Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society posted video of the rescue on social media

A volleyball net, a front-end loader, a firetruck and 600 feet of marine rope.

That’s what Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre (OWL) used to rescue a juvenile bald eagle that was stuck in a water treatment settling pond in Richmond. OWL posted video of the rescue, which took place on Saturday, Aug. 24, to its social media channels earlier this week.

On Saturday, Aug. 24, a Good Samaritan called OWL to report the young eagle was stuck in a settling pond at the Iona Island Waste Treatment Plant. The bird had landed on the muddy surface of the pond and its feathers soon became clogged with sludge, rendering it unable to fly away.

“The bird was trapped on a patch of vegetation — if he stepped off he would start to sink, having to breaststroke back to the island of vegetation,” OWL wrote on Facebook.

SEE ALSO: Helping birds a passion for staff at Delta’s OWL rehabilitation centre

Rescuers had few options to help the bird; safety restrictions meant boats and people are not allowed in the settling pond, and using a helicopter was out of the questions since the pond is located within Vancouver International Airport’s restricted airspace.

What’s more, the treatment plant’s crane wasn’t long enough to help either, as its 18 metre reach was not enough to get to the eagle 40 metres away.

OWL staff and volunteers came up with a plan to suspend a 10-metre volleyball net between a Richmond fire truck and the treatment plant’s front-end loader, then “drive” the net to the patch of vegetation the eagle was clinging to in the hope the bird would get caught up in it and could then be pulled to shore.

Once the eagle was reeled in, rescuers cut the bird free and brought it back to OWL’s facility in South Delta for medical treatment and rehabilitation. Thankfully, aside from being weak and hungry, the eagle’s only injuries were some minor scrapes.

The young eagle was fed salmon and kept in OWL’s intensive care unit for a number of days for further observations and cleaning before being released back into the wild on Tuesday, Sept. 17.

Watch OWL’s full 23-minute video of the eagle’s rescue and rehabilitation below.

SEE ALSO: PHOTOS: Hundreds flock to OWL open house



editor@northdeltareporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) clean and examine a young bald eagle the group rescued from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) clean and examine a young bald eagle the group rescued from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) clean and examine a young bald eagle the group rescued from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) clean and examine a young bald eagle the group rescued from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) feed salmon chunks to a young bald eagle the group rescued from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

Rescuers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) feed salmon chunks to a young bald eagle the group rescued from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

A young bald eagle was released back into the wild on Tuesday, Sept. 17 after staff and volunteers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) rescued the bird from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

A young bald eagle was released back into the wild on Tuesday, Sept. 17 after staff and volunteers from Delta’s Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (OWL) rescued the bird from a sewage treatment settling pond in Richmond, B.C. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019. (Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society/YouTube video screenshot)

Just Posted

The property on which a residential school (pictured) that was torn down years ago in Lower Post is to be the location of a cultural centre. (Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre photo)
Lower Post residential school building to be demolished, replaced with cultural centre

Project to be funded by federal and provincial governments, Daylu Dena Council

Photo collage of loved ones lost to substance use and overdose. (Photo courtesy Moms Stop The Harm)
B.C. overdose deaths still rising 5 years after public health emergency declared

Moms Stop the Harm calls on B.C. to provide safe supply in response to deadly illicit drug use

Angelique Houlihan gets her COVID-19 vaccine jab last week at the community-wide clinic. (Angelique Houlihan photo)
Vaccine clinic continues this week

Plenty of booking spots available

District of Houston
Council adds flexibility to spending decisions

Singles out road works as potential beneficiary

Filling potholes in Houston
Holes filled on Highway 16

Potholes aren’t restricted to District of Houston streets. Lakes District Maintenance crews… Continue reading

A woman wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as she walks past the emergency entrance of Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Top doctor warns B.C.’s daily cases could reach 3,000 as COVID hospitalizations surge

There are more than 400 people in hospital, with 125 of them in ICU

The father of Aaliyah Rosa planted a tree and laid a plaque in her memory in 2018. (Langley Advance Times files)
Final witness will extend Langley child murder trial into May or June

Lengthy trial began last autumn with COVID and other factors forcing it to take longer than expected

The corner of 96th Avenue and Glover Road in Fort Langley now has traffic signals, and new “touchless” signal activation buttons. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Busy Fort Langley intersection gets ‘touchless’ crosswalk signals

The new traffic light started operation in April

A crossing guard stops traffic as students wearing face masks to curb the spread of COVID-19 arrive at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. A number of schools in the Fraser Health region, including Woodward Hill, have reported cases of the B.1.7.7 COVID-19 variant first detected in the U.K. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID-infected students in Lower Mainland schools transmitting to 1 to 2 others: data

Eight to 13 per cent of COVID cases among students in the Lower Mainland were acquired in schools, B.C. says

Norm Scott, president of Royal Canadian Legion Branch # 91, is disappointed the Legion does not qualify for COVID financial assistance from the provincial government. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C.’s pandemic aid package passing Legion branches by

Federal non-profit status stymies provincial assistance eligibility

Latest modelling by public health shows cases generated by COVID-19 infections into places where it can spread quickly. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
Industrial sites, pubs, restaurants driving COVID-19 spread in B.C.

Infection risk higher in offices, retail, warehouses, farms

Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller said it would be “very challenging and not very safe” for him and his teammates to play as scheduled on Friday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Canucks’ return to ice postponed again after players voice COVID health concerns

Friday’s game against the Edmonton Oilers was called off after the team met virtually with the NHLPA

B.C. Attorney General David Eby, Minister Responsible for Housing. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. announces $2B for affordable, middle-income family home projects

HousingHub financing to encourage more developers, groups – with low-interest loans – to build affordable homes

Most Read