May at Tracy Aviary is full of events, news, gardens and birds... and LOTS of them! Out of all of the things the Aviary is celebrating this month, the event that has us soaring is the grand opening of our newest exhibit and family play area, Eagle Ridge! It will open to the public on May 11th as part of our Urban Bird Festival. You can see the new exhibit and play area, see the eagles, enjoy activities with community partners, do crafts and learn while exploring the birds and surrounding nature we love. To kick off the weekend-long celebration, we thought it was only fitting to introduce you to the Eagle Ridge residents: the eagles! 



Eagles of all kinds come to Aviaries and Zoos a little differently than other birds. They are a federally protected species and can only come from licensed wildlife rehabilitators. The eagles you find in captivity are only there after they have been deemed unfit to live on their own in the wild. This is usually because they can’t fly due to health issues or injury. The stories of our four beautiful eagles are no different. Tracy Aviary's male golden eagle was found as a juvenile with a break in his wing in 2002. Although it is no longer practiced by wildlife rehabilitation centers today, after failing to rehabilitate the wing, it was amputated. After that, our male golden eagle was brought to the Aviary from Emery County, UT in February, 2003 as a potential mate for our resident female. 



One of the Aviary’s oldest resident birds, our female golden eagle has been here since 1990. She is 34 years old, which is older than the standard lifespan of a golden eagle! She has lived and long and happy life here at the Aviary after being found in the Daniel’s Canyon area with a left shoulder fracture.  She has had numerous chicks with her male counterpart while living at the Aviary. Two of those chicks were lucky enough to be part of a release program, and were released back into the wild in Topeka in 2006. 



Justice, our original bald eagle was caught in Gordon, Nebraska in 2008  where she was the subject of a medical research report. She underwent rehabilitation surgery to fix her right humorous and although unsuccessful, her surgery report actually got published. She was also part of the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program in Colorado before coming to the Aviary to stay. 


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Last but not least, meet our newest bald eagle, Liberty. She came to the Aviary from Rowena Wildlife Clinic in Balles, Oregon. She was found with a galvanized rooting nail in her left wing and was treated for metal toxicity. Although the nail was removed, the wing never fully recovered. She made her debut at the Aviary on  and although she is still getting used to her new home, she is doing very well.

You can meet Justice, Liberty and all of our eagles at the Eagle Ridge grand opening this weekend at Urban Bird Festival. Saturday and Sunday from 10am - 3pm. Event included with price of admission. Free Admission for Head Start and Early-Head Start families during the month of May. For more information visit our webiste

-Kenzy Johnson

Published in Bird Tweets