Touched by Junior and Malala? Want to make Junior’s short life meaningful? You can help!

22 July 2022

There has been a human outcry over the death of Junior, the fledgling Bald Eagle at the Gabriola Island Bald Eagle nest. The story of how Malala, a Red-tail Hawk was brought to the nest as prey only to be adopted by the adults and the nestling touched everyone’s heart that heard it. As we watched them learn from one another, share prey, and cuddle up on the nest we knew that this was a very special relationship. The sadness when Junior was killed by landing on a BC power pole was unthinkable. To find out that Junior was not the first eaglet to die on that same pole made me mad. Other hydro electric companies respond in a positive way by making the poles safe. In Manitoba it was a response to the Ospreys near Matlock and Winnipeg Beach who were electrocuted. Platforms were built and poles made safe. Manitoba Hydo was clearing around poles at a local park when it was brought to their attention by no fewer than 300 calls and e-mails and a newspaper story that they were not taking into account the Cooper’s Hawk nest in the park. People picketed. The news channels came out. Manitoba Hydro stopped clear cutting saying they would stop all cutting til after the breeding season at the end of September. In other jurisdictions in the US, if a raptor is killed on a pole the company responds by coming out and making the poles safe. Not by sitting quiet in their offices. So join me and hundreds of others telling the head of BC Power that it is time for them to begin by fixing the issue on Gabriola Island.

In response to the cry to help, GROWLS has sent out information on the protective devices. I left a comment so that you could see the positive response by the power company in Decorah, Iowa.

Educate yourself on what the power companies can do. Maybe you can put in a detailed account of what another power company has done when a similar incident has happened.

As we know Solly, the loved hatch of the Port Lincoln Osprey barge in 2020 was killed on a power pole. I understood that Port Lincoln was working with the hydro companies in South Australia to make the poles safe. I will write and see if there has been any progress. In the meantime, please join with others to let BC Hydro know that it is unacceptable to knowingly kill raptors on their poles. It is not just Junior. I wonder how many raptors are killed in British Columbia every year on power lines?? Let’s find out!

Thank you so much. Our sincere condolences go out to everyone at GROWLS, to the Bald Eagles who have lost their fledgling, and to Malala who lost her brother.

I will be back later with a wrap of today’s nest news. Take care everyone.


  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Thanks Mary Ann! I’m gonna do my part too! Enough is enough and something like this has to happen but there are a lot of upset people and maybe they might listen this time too.

    1. You are very welcome. Maybe with the number of people who loved this eagle family we can get some traction from BC Hydro! Thank you for helping, Linda!

      1. Linda Kontol says:

        Your very welcome! Thank you for all the info here.
        We need to all
        Stick together and get this done if we can !

  2. Mo says:

    What can we do to put pressure on them? This makes me so mad!!!!! So preventable and I’m tired of people and companies not respecting wildlife and doing simple things to protect them.

    1. Hi Mo. Thanks for writing in. Public pressure. Letters and e-mails to the company. I will post those again tomorrow. Phone calls. Local news reports. Letters to the editor of the paper. This is the thing. BC Hydro has been able to get out of taking care of wildlife because their founding documents did not require them to do so. The lawmakers must change those documents and bring them up to date just like all other building, school, etc codes are. BC Hydro gives OWLS a grant of 50,000$ (that is the raptor rehabilitation in BC) a year. OWLS works with them and they have done some good things but not about the poles. The other issue is the cutting down of 150 Bald Eagle nests at the site of the C Dam. — It has to be public outrage and very public! OWLS cannot criticize them. But BC Hydro is a public company paid for by our taxes. It is essential to call them out and say times have changed. We know that to live – we need to live with all living things! Get everyone you know to write in..write the papers, the radio shows, anyone who has an e-mail address and don’t let Junior and Malala’s story be yesterday’s news. — Thank you so much for caring.

      1. Mo says:

        Thank you. This should NOT have happened and was preventable. So infuriating! I have had experience with companies not doing their part when it comes to wildlife and you have to threaten to go to the media before they finally are willing to listen. I will send emails today!

      2. Thank you, Mo. We hope that the power companies will realize that it is not only in the interest of the ospreys but also their interest that the power they promise customers is not cut off if a large raptor is killed! It helps them. Thank you for writing in. It is important that government agencies know that the sentiments of the public are changing and want wildlife protected – not killed knowingly!

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