Rehab and Release Stories:
We see a lot of injured wildlife come through our doors and it is not possible to put all of them online.
On this page you will find just a small selection of the animals that were released back into the wild.
Some of the birds on this page are still in the rehabilitation phase, but we are hopeful
that they will be released in the future.
Here is a look back at some of our rehab and release stories for 2015.
View rehab and release stories for 2014 here.
This juvenile Bald Eagle was struck by a semi near mile marker 99 on Hwy #2 while feeding on a deer carcass on February 5th. This female eagle was brought into Central Valley Vet Clinic by the man who witnessed the incident. After an exam by Dr Dugger it was found to just be bruised, no broken bones. After several days at MWWRC resting and being fed it was taken back close to where it was found and released on February 10th.
This Snowy Owl was found along Hwy 35 near Bigfork missing part of her Right wing, she probably had been hit by a car. She was taken to Central Valley Vet Clinic where Dr. Dugger removed necrotic tissue and started antibiotics. The bird remains at MWWRC recovering from her injuries. MWWRC has applied to keep her as an education bird and we have named her Tika.
This Bald Eagle was found off Steel Bridge Road unable to fly on March 11th feeding on dead horse. It was taken to Central Valley Vet Clinic where Dr Dugger and staff administered fluids and supportive care for a few days. Then it was transferred to MWWRC where it continued to improve and was released on April 9th near the area it was found. More pictures and a video of the release here!.
On May 4th we received an adult Bald Eagle from Lake Blaine Rd. It was unable to fly because of left wing-tip damage.
On June 17th it was joined by a juvenile Bald Eagle that had fallen from the nest out east of Kalispell.
While in rehab they formed a bond, and so when both were ready to rejoin life in the wild, they were released together on August 6th.
Here are just a few photos from that wonderful day...
This Prairie Falcon was brought to us by a F.W.P. warden on July 13th, after being found hopping alongside the road on McMannamy Draw.
After rehabbing at our facility from a bruised left-wing elbow, and putting on over 100 grams in healthy weight, we were happy to release it back where it came from on August 7th.
This Juvenile Ferruginous Hawk was found outside of Shelby Montana, July 5th, after a wind storm blew the nest down.
Luckily she did not sustain any injuries.
After spending time in our flight room showing us her flight skills, she was released August 10th in Shelby near the area she was found.
Bald Eagle Rescue
We recieved a call from a young man who's family is renting a house on the lake, on Angel Point Road . The tree was over 100ft tall and somehow the Bald Eagle had gotten one of it's legs caught in a fork of two branches close to the top of the tree. It's weight had then bent the tree top over leaving it hanging upside down by one leg.
Volunteer, Byron Crow, was over 70ft up the tree before his weight started to bend the tree more and spread the branches apart. That along with the wind swaying the tree, allowed the Bald Eagle to get free and fly off. Byron did carry a saw up and was prepared to take the tree top off and lower the whole thing down.
We figure the eagle had been hanging upside down at least 6 hours.
Sharp Shinned Hawk
This Sharp Shinned Hawk was brought in from the Blue Bay area for a short stay in our care.
After just three days it was able to be released back into the wild.
We admitted this Juvenile Goshawk on August 29th.
The homeowner brought it into our center from the Columbia Falls area after it sustained a head injury from colliding with one of her windows.
When it came in it was unable to stand or hold it's head upright.
It has been recovering under 24 hour Vet care, and we are happy to report is showing improvement and standing on its own now.
The first was found along the Rail Road tracks out of Lothair, MT. on August 8th, with no obvious injuries, but was disoriented, so most likely suffering from a head injury. One of the BNSF employees was kind enough to bring it to our center.
The second was found just SW of the Flathead River bridge on Hwy 35, by a man out taking pictures who brought it to us on August 25th.
It was nearly starved to death, and very emaciated.
The release out south of Polson on September 11 was successful, and they are flying free once again!
Red Tail Hawk
Back on October 28th we took in this adult Red Tail Hawk with an open wound to it's left knee, X-rays showed lead fragments from a gunshot. Very disturbing...
Thankfully the shooter was a bad shot, and the hawk survived!
The wound was cleaned and sutured, and after some time rehabbing at our facility it was ready for release back into the wild by volunteer Byron Crow.
Juvenile Great Horned Owl
This handsome juvenile Great Horned Owl was found out in the Blanchard Lake area of Whitefish on November 20th. The property owners called concerned after observing it grounded for quite some time.
On physical exam we found it had a bruise to the left wing and a swollen wrist joint. His injuries healed quickly in rehab, and after just two weeks he was flying good and strong in our flight room.
Happily he was released back to a life in the wild December 4th by volunteer Cassandra Wilson.
Great Horned Owl
Another Great Horned Owl ready for release this past week. This one was recovered by CSKT, and rehabbed for a couple of days in their care. It was then transferred to our center for continued care and it's final release.
It gained a healthy 550g. in a few days, and was free flying in the flight chamber, proving it was ready to go. Between that, and a great long term weather forecast, the owl was released by volunteers Byron Crow and Raven Moss to a safe, appropriate habitat.
This mature Bald Eagle was found grounded on Shooting Star Drive off Hwy 206, November 16th.
No apparent injuries were found on examination, it just would not fly.
After several days in rehab it became much more active, and was eating well. Once moved into our flight room, it demonstrated it could most certainly fly.
It was released back into the wild on December 11th, weighing a nice healthy 10 pounds, by volunteers Amy Amidon and Cassandra Wilson.
Northern Pygmy Owl
This Northern Pygmy Owl was found on October 29th in a yard on Baker Ave. in Whitefish.
The homeowners initially thought it might just be stunned, but after observation brought it to us because it appeared unable to fly.
On inspection it had suffered a bruised left wing.
After healing under our care it was released back to the wild on December 9th.