Fly high, Odette
Wednesday, 13th January, 2021
By Annette Northey
An injured Wedge-tailed Eagle rushed to Dubbo’s Taronga Zoo Hospital has been euthanised, despite locals’ efforts to save her.
Named after the swan princess in Swan Lake, Odette was found injured on December 31 near a dam on a property on the outskirts of Broken Hill.
The property owner swiftly brought her into town and handed her over to Stephanie Jones at RRANA (Rescue and Rehabilitation of Australia Native Animals).
Stephanie said it appeared Odette had been involved in a scrap with a younger Wedge-tailed Eagle, but had come off second best.
“All her tail feathers were missing and some of her wing feathers, too,” Stephanie said.
“She was seen by a veterinarian who said her carpal, or wrist (in the wing), was broken, and that some of the bone around it had died too.”
Much of the skeletal system of the Wedge-tailed Eagle has the same terminology as that of the human skeletal system - the carpal is a small bone at the junction of the radius and metacarpals of the wing.
“Unfortunately, because there had been too much time between receiving her and getting her on a flight to Dubbo on January 6, the damage was irreparable,” Stephanie said.
“I got the call on Thursday morning (January 7) from the vet, who told me that Odette had been euthanized.
“I was absolutely devastated,” Stephanie said.
Stephanie said the experience has made her realise she would like to learn more about birds of prey.
“I would like to learn more about looking after raptors (birds of prey), do some training or something, and especially get to release one,” she said.
Odette’s flight to Dubbo cost $700 and had to be met by RRANA.
“It was a substantial amount paid by RRANA and no funding is available for wildlife rescue groups in NSW to help with the cost,” Stephanie said.
“Thankfully, we had some money there from a fundraiser last year, so that covered it.
“I’m going to try and see if I can access some sort of truck to transport the animals to Dubbo, because there is just too much mucking around involved in transporting them by air.”
Stephanie said if anyone out there has any ideas, or can help, she would love to hear from them.
Similarly, RRANA is always looking for volunteers to help them do the wonderful, critical work they do, so please call Stephanie on 0429 204 416 if you would like to know more.
And of course, donations can be made any time to NAB, BSB: 082-937, Acc No: 873588528.