Maverick, the rescued bald eagle, is splashing in the pond and perching on the branches in his Aquarium habitat following nearly six months behind the scenes protected from the threat of avian bird flu. In our care since 2014, Maverick was found in Wisconsin suffering a broken wing and unable to fly. He was relocated to the Aquarium serving as a symbol of our nation and as a conservation messenger about habitat loss, wildlife rehabilitation and endangered species.
"He immediatley went to the pond to splash around when he explored his habitat. We left the behind-the-scenes area open for him in case he wasn't quite ready to venture out. We gave him the choice and he chose to be out all day long," said Julie Smith, NCAFF husbandry curator.
Maverick followed up his splash by perching in the sun to dry off his beautiful plumage. Visitors once again have the opportunity to experience the many facets of this majestic animal at the Aquarium.
While Maverick is expected to continue to grace us in his public habitat this summer, Aquarium staff will take all precautions this fall during bird migration. If necessary, they will tuck him away behind the scenes again to mitigate disease risk from the many birds flying overhead.