Eaglet, Fostered By A Beloved Bald Eagle Named Murphy, Is Released Back Into The Wild

On orphaned eaglet, who was fostered by a bald eagle named Murphy, was released back into the wild along the Mississippi River last week. Hundreds of enthusiastic supporters were there to witness the special occasion.

Murphy captured international acclaim when news of him incubating a rock spread like wildfire through social media. The story took an even more remarkable turn when staff at World Bird Sanctuary (WBS) recognized Murphy’s potential as a caregiver for a recently orphaned baby eagle (Eaglet 23-126), placing a calculated bet on his nurturing instincts.

Due to an injury in his youth, Murphy can’t fly, but he can walk and hop to low perches in his aviary. He used those skills to defend his rock fiercely from the other resident eagles, just as an eagle would defend its eggs.

The Sanctuary staff introduced Murphy to the eaglet carefully. They put the chick in a small, heated cage, in an enclosure with Murphy. Murphy investigated and began feeding the eaglet through the bars of the cage. After the WBS staff released the eaglet from his small cage, Murphy instantly took to his new role as foster dad and began watching over the baby and taught him how to grow to be an adult eagle.

“Today is a wonderful day for Murphy, for the Eaglet, and for everyone associated with the World Bird Sanctuary,” said Roger Holloway, Executive Director of World Bird Sanctuary. “We firmly believe that Murphy’s exceptional care, attention, and nurturing has equipped this young eagle with the necessary skills to thrive in his new community here along the Mississippi.”

Eaglet 23-126 is the 126th patient in 2023 at the Sanctuary’s hospital. Additionally, The World Bird Sanctuary unveiled a significant campaign to raise funds for a new foster center which will enhance the Sanctuary’s hospital in honor of Murphy, the orphaned eaglet, and Murphy’s Rock.

The commissioning of the new foster center represents an important milestone for the World Bird Sanctuary. With enhanced resources and capacity, the center will empower the Sanctuary’s hospital to provide sustained and scaled support to the avian residents, ensuring their well-being and rehabilitation for years to come.

You can watch the incredible release footage HERE!

Please contribute to World Bird Sanctuary’s (WBS) campaign HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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