Check The Video: Kayaker Rescues Eagle From Ice In Waukegan
For some, New Year's Day means taking it easy after the night before, maybe just hanging out on the couch for some football and recovery.
For others, it's also about recovery, but in this case the recovery was for an injured and underweight eagle that found itself floating on a chunk of ice in Waukegan Harbor on Sunday morning.
While Many Were At Home Taking It Easy, Luckily There Were Some People Out And About Around Waukegan Harbor On Sunday Morning
And those folks saw something that drew their full attention: the bird in the photo above, not looking much like a proud eagle should look. So, a call was made to Chicago Bird Collision Monitors, a rescue organization that has handled bird rescues for over 20 years in and around the Chicago area, and takes nearly 10,000 calls per year to help birds in need of assistance.
Rescuers Weren't Sure How To Get The Injured Eagle Off The Ice And Out Of The Water Until One Member Of Their Group, A Long-Time Kayak Racer, Had An Idea
Normally, rescues are done by hand, but given the circumstances in this case, another way had to be used. So, Chicago Bird Collision Monitors volunteer Jim Tibensky hopped into a kayak and headed out to the bird.
"The bird looked really miserable. It was wet, bedraggled, and when I got there, it didn't move at all. From the time I saw it to the time they got it in the net, I didn't even see it blink its eyes," Tibensky said.
"I got my bow up on the ice a little bit and then just very slowly, hoping not to dislodge the bird, paddled," Tibensky said. "It was on the opposite side of the harbor from where the people were, so I had to paddle it all the way across."
I'm no expert, but I've got to think that sitting on warm towels is better than sitting on ice.
Take a second and check out these videos of the eagle rescue: