Thunder, the Bald Eagle at the WVRRC

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Thunder, the Bald Eagle at the WVRRC

Postby deizelsmommy on Mon Dec 23, 2013 7:23 pm

Hey everyone,
I know a large group of you came to our center for CITO, which Mike still talks about the great group turnout and results.

Our official release:

It is with great sadness during the season of joy that the West Virginia Raptor Rehabilitation Center (WVRRC) announces the passing of our beautiful bald eagle, Thunder.

Thunder died at 9:20pm, on December 21st, in the arms of the one who was her greatest friend and long-time partner, Michael S. Book, WVRRC Founder and Director. She was a resident of the WVRRC twenty-one years to the day. Thunder was hatched in up-state New York along the Delaware River according to her leg band, and was shot in the thigh and left wing while migrating as a juvenile over West Virginia in 1992. She was brought to the WVRRC for rehabilitation on December 1st, and into Mike's dedicated care on December 21st. With kindness, patience, and lots of tasty rabbits, fish, and squirrels, Thunder made her recovery. Veterinarians determined that due to the nature of her wing injury; the gunshot basically took off all of the vital primary flight feathers rendering sustained flight impossible, she would be unable to survive if returned to the wild. So began the process of training Mike to understand the needs and behaviors of a young bald eagle with all of the spirit of the wild in her eyes and heart.

Thunder became the WVRRC's most visible environmental education bird ambassador. She traveled all over the United State, making appearances before thousands, and dozens; from the US Senate, to kindergarten classrooms, delivering a message of conservation, responsible environmental stewardship and hope for the future. She touched the lives of a generation of children.

She will be missed beyond measure, our bright big girl, our watch eagle, and creator of whirlwinds.

If you would like to share a story or pictures of when you saw Thunder at a program, please send them to We will be compiling pictures of her for an album on Facebook and for future slideshows of our beautiful Thunder.
Thunder at the Ridge
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