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VIDEO: Fisherman rescues drowning bald eagle

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BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA – A fisherman rescued one exhausted young bald eagle from drowning. It sounds like a fisherman’s tale but he has video to prove it. National Geographic magazine reports that Don Dunbar was fishing in Nanoose Bay when he spotted something odd in the water. He brought the bald eagle into his boat.

“Who is going to believe this one.” Dunbar said.

The raptor was waterlogged and unable to fly. He brought the eagle to a local wildlife rescue center where the bird was treated. The young eagle is doing much better now.

This happens fledglings more often than you would think. According to a National Geographic interview with O.W.L. Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society:

What happens commonly with bald eagles is they sort of misjudge the size of the fish, and they sometimes just cannot carry it away, and instinctually they just will not let go of it either. Sometimes they end up getting dragged under a bit.

But they can swim. They have very strong wings, and if they’re close enough to shore they’ll just continue hanging on to the fish and drag it onto shore. We don’t really know, but we can only surmise that’s what was going on here.

Representatives from the Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society say that the bird would have probably died from exaustion if Dunbar did not come across it while fishing. Saying, ” That bird was fighting for his life. He was half the weight he should have been at this age. [He was] very, very emaciated when he came in.”