WSU Cougar Head Logo Washington State University
WSU Insider
News and Information for Faculty, Staff, and the WSU Community

Young eagle Jordan dies

PULLMAN – One of two very weak and starving bald eagles found near Colville, Wash., has died at WSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine. 

The 3-year old juvenile eagle nicknamed “Jordan,” died this morning after crews say she appeared to be resting well overnight. The eagle suffered severe dehydration, hypothermia, and had lost a large percentage of its normal body weight before it was found in the wild unable to fly.  During treatment at WSU, the eagle remained very lethargic and was not eating well.  Veterinary care providers said Jordan passed quietly in its enclosure.

“The odds of survival were not good from the very beginning,” said Dr. Nickol Finch, who heads up the raptor rehabilitation service at WSU.

The team is now focused on saving the second eagle brought in this week; a 5-year-old mature male bald eagle found just south of Colville along Highway 395.  The WSU crew has named the older eagle “Carpenter.” The names come from authors of widely used veterinary avian textbooks.

Cases of sick eagles brought to WSU’s veterinary college increase somewhat between November and March. A high percentage suffer from lead poisoning; the source of which is still unclear to many wildlife experts. 

Early indications are that Jordan suffered from elevated lead levels, but a definitive test is pending.  A necropsy, (a post-mortem examination of an animal like an autopsy in humans) is being performed at the Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory to help determine a cause of death.

“Losing patients despite our best efforts and unmatched animal medical care is one of the hardest things there is in this job,” said Dr. Finch, “but the fact remains that many of these majestic animals can’t be saved by the time they get to definitive care.”

In recent months, WSU successfully rehabilitated and released a pair of eagles from the same region.  “River,” a female adult eagle was released near Kettle Falls, Wash., in July 2006, after more than nine months of rehabilitation.  “Kim,” a second eagle, was released outside Newport, Wash., in November 2007.

Next Story

Bee center filling up, honey extractor moves in

Honey will soon be made at WSU’s Honey Bee & Pollinator Research, Extension, and Education Facility in Othello after a large equipment move.

Recent News

Bee center filling up, honey extractor moves in

Honey will soon be made at WSU’s Honey Bee & Pollinator Research, Extension, and Education Facility in Othello after a large equipment move.

Tribal connection inspires efforts to save salmon

Studying toxic runoff to help save iconic salmon species, Stephanie Blair draws on science as well as the knowledge and connections of her Native American community.

Insider will return Nov. 29

WSU Insider is taking a break to join with the rest of the university community in celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday. We’ll be back the morning of Nov. 29 with fresh posts for the WSU community.

Scouting for a forgotten few

WSU historian Ryan Booth sheds light on the largely forgotten history of the Northern Cheyenne and White Mountain Apache who served as scouts for the U.S. Army from 1866–1947.

Find More News

Subscribe for more updates