Shot Eagle Recovering from Surgery

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(Cordova) A bald eagle shot and left for dead underwent a four and a half hour surgery Friday night.

Doctors repaired the wing that was shot and the leg that broke during the fall.

"It went as good as could be expected," Dr. David Hannon said.

The eagle, named Abe, underwent the surgery at the Memphis Veterinary Specialists in Cordova.

Dr. Hanno operated on the bird's bones.

"There were two major breaks and it was very difficult to get everything back into alignment but we were able to," he said. "At this point we're going to stay optimistic and get everything back into normal function."

In a few days Abe, will start rehab.

"It will go into a small cage so that it doesn't exercise,"  Knox Martin with the Mid South Raptor Center said.

Martin said the eagle will be moved to his facility to start recovery, which he said won't be easy

"Hopefully it will be released, but the injuries with this bird are pretty severe," he said.

While Abe has a long road to recovery, another eagle at the center offers hope. He was also a gun shot victim, but now is ready to soar back in the wild.

"It's going up to Reelfoot Lake threes a good population of eagles up there," he said.

But if Abe doesn't recover fully like the other eagle, he'll still have a future.

"Luckily with a bald eagle they're obviously the national symbol and they're a nice big display bird so they're usually very easy to find a home for at either a zoo around the country, another rehab center, or nature center or state park," he said.

Because whether Abe flies again or not, he's still an American symbol of strength and beauty.