Little Middle and the fishing line

30 March 2022

As all of you are aware, at the Dale Hollow Nest this morning, River brought in a fantastic fish. She enjoyed eating some of it and then she spotted the fishing hook and line in the side of the fish. It is unclear whether River is 18 or 23. I was told 23 or 24 but today on the chat someone said 18. It doesn’t matter. River lives around a lake full of people fishing and she is probably and sadly aware of what fishing line and hooks can do. River broke the line and threw the hook over the side of the nest. Unfortunately, a piece of line remains and at 15:30:37, you can see fishing line around the left foot of Little Middle, DH15. It is not clear how bad the situation is. Little Middle has eaten well and had a huge crop. There is a storm pushing through the area tonight with 55 mph winds (or 90 kph).

I Googled wildlife rehabbers in Kentucky and the one who answered me within a minute was Carol Moore at Wildlife Matters. Carol told me that she notified the Raptor Centre and they had put in a call to the USFish and Wildlife Service. Many of you have asked if anything else can be done at this point to help Little Middle. The answer is ‘no’. Positive wishes and prayers, always. Those that need to know the situation were contacted through Carol and behind the scenes, a falconer friend reached out to friends in Kentucky. Thank you, KB.

The land that the nest is on is owned by the Army. Some of you will know that much of the land, if not all, around the Channel Islands where the nest of Thunder and Akecheta is located is owned by the US Navy. Dr Sharpe has to get special permission to go in. What it requires on this piece of property is unclear.

To remove an eaglet’s stuck foot, to take it for care, or to remove human causes in the nest that could harm the eagles, requires a permit. It also requires a means of getting to the eaglets. And personally I think it requires the owners of the property to be a little bit pushy. This clearly works for D Pritchett!!!!!! and others. This is a new nest and just how secure the tree is – well that is unknown. Wonder if they use a climber or a cherry picker to service the cameras annually?

I live in hope that Little Middle will either lose the piece of line naturally and will not get it tight around its leg before then OR that help will come to him. There are no guarantees. We try as best we can to get help.

Also remember that it is not always human caused problems that get the attention of help and an intervention. ‘J’ sent me a note that an eaglet at the DC Arboretum nest had gotten its foot stuck and an intervention had taken place. Thanks, J. Here is the video of that:

Continue to send your best wishes to this nest. If you know of someone in the US Fish and Wildlife Service in the area – by all means call them. If you are reading this and know someone at Dale Hollow Lake, tell them about the other interventions, get them onside – they love their eagles – and maybe they can mount some pressure. Again, we do not know the tree and it just might not be possible. The eaglets are too young to fledge or jump off. They would pancake if someone came up. It would take a couple of minutes and the intervention would be done. Always hope. Fingers crossed.

Thank you for joining me and thank you for caring so much for Little Middle. After everything else, he certainly deserves a chance at life! Take care.

Thank you to Dale Hollow EC where I took my screen capture.

1 Comment

  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Thank you Mary Ann. I’m praying and so worried at the same time. I so hoped they would get there by now before dark.
    🙏 hang on little middle. God Bless you!
    Hope to hear from you soon Mary Ann.
    Have a good evening.

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