THE RECENTLY rescued Philippine Eagle, nicknamed “Lipadas” after the river where he was found, has been deemed unfit for release back to the wild following a series of assessments.
Dr. Jayson Ibañez, Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEF) research and conservation director, said “Lipadas is not recommended for further operation, but could still be a candidate for captive breeding.”
The PEF recently trapped and rescued the two-year-old Philippine Eagle at Lipadas River on Jan. 2 after forest guards received complaints from residents regarding their livestock since the apex predator was reportedly feeding on their native chickens.
The eagle was successfully rescued with the help of the Gratuitous Permit issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, a team of PEF Biologists, and Bantay Bukid Partners.
The eagle’s right eye “was hit by a marble fired from a homemade gun,” according to PEF’s assessment.
Dr. Bayani Vandenbroeck, a veterinary consultant from Animal Wellness Clinic’s initial assessment on that same day said, “Eagle seems to be healthy except for the blind (right) eye. Eyeball is completely gone on the right side. On the left, externally the eye appears normal but inside it seems changes are happening. Also, the eagle might eventually be completely blind….But no bullet wounds or evidence of any other recent physical injuries. Bones seem intact also; no evidence of fractures. Body condition score is 4/5, and (bird) appears to have extra fats.”
Ibañez said the full assessment of the bird by a resident ophthalmologist said Lipadas is not recommended for more operations as it may further stress the eagle.
The bird is also “unfit for release back into the wild, as its vision was already impaired, which makes it difficult for hunting.”
The Philippine Eagle Foundation is continuously seeking support and donations, to further help and protect more wild eagles needing help.
Photos from the Philippine Eagle Foundation
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