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Eagle that was rescued in April, released back to wild

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SHARON -- A bald eagle that was brought back to life after being poisoned, has been released back to the wild. The eagle was released by Audubon Sharon last Thursday.  A small group of people involved with the rescue and rehabilitation were on hand for the release.

Eagle Release -  Photo by Jeffrey Kellner

Eagle Release - Photo by Jeffrey Kellner

Once the carrier door was open, the bird flew to a nearby tree and stayed there for several minutes before flying off.

DEEP Conservation Officers rescued the bird April 1 near the Thomaston Dam where it was on the ground and struggling to even stand.

The eagle, a male estimated to be about 9 years old, had high internal levels of mercury, lead and the deadly drug pentobarbital, in addition to metals that drug can be fatal if ingested in large quantities.

The DEEP said pentobarbital is a controlled substance used by licensed veterinarians as a humane euthanasia injection for pets and livestock. They believe that the bird ingested the substance by feeding on the carcasses of animals euthanized with the drug that had been improperly disposed.

The bird was treated twice a day with medicine, followed up by feedings. The last round of blood work showed decreased levels of lead and mercury and no remaining presence of sodium pentobarbital, the chemical that ultimately brought him down in the first place.

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