Sunday, February 19, 2012

Some more 2011 statistics

Sent the Bald Eagle in on another klepto-mission last night. She came back with an interesting document on medical statistics from 2011. Interested?

Reportable injuries - Reportable injuries are things like high-voltage trauma (HVT), poisoning, and gunshot wounds, those unhappy side effects of the Human presence in raptor habitat. These are injuries that are reported to the State because they're trying to figure out how bad the problems are and what can be done about them.

  • 26 reportable injuries in 2011 (compared to just 14 in 2010)
  • 4 of these injury types were new for the RMRP:
    • leg-hold traps (multiple)
    • power line collision (as opposed to shock)
    • methane burner flare
    • wind turbine
  • 2011 saw twice as many HVTs as 2010
  • Three of the HVTs were tracked back to a specific power pole, and those three poles were retro-fitted by the electric company to be raptor-safe. Three cheers for working together to fix the problem!
You may be interested to know that the methane burner bird, a young Swainson's Hawk, is still with us, doing well, and waiting to molt and grow in a whole new set of feathers. I'll be writing about him soon! 

2011 injury and release stats - these stats do not include overwintered birds from 2010
  • 242 birds admitted
  • 47% of all birds admitted were released
  • 84% of birds who survived the first 48 hours were released (This statistic is really pretty amazing. What it essentially means is that of the birds who had a fighting chance, the potentially-savable birds, 84% of them were released! That's incredible!)
  • 56% of admitted birds were first-year birds, Of those, only 26% were orphans (kids with nothing wrong with them)
  • 53% of known injuries were hit-by-car
  • 17% of known injuries were window strike
  • 14% of known injuries were HVT
  • Over 50% of admitted birds had injuries of unknown cause
  • 40% of injured birds had at least one fracture
  • 23% were emaciated (not just underweight)
  • 25% had head and/or spinal trauma
  • Birds that were released stayed an average of 44 days
Live prey used in 2010 - this is what we call "mouse school", or making sure that injured or immature birds know how to hunt effectively before they are released back into the wild. 
  • 55 quail
  • 287 mice
  • 149 rats
Amazed by what these birds go through just trying to survive? Want to support the RMRP's efforts to save them? Click here or check out the "wish list" page in the banner at the top. 

Whew! That's a lot of numbers for my head. I'm going to go hoot out the window for awhile. 


  1. Quite the stats! Thanks for the midnight thievery mission! Well done as a bald eagle should know how to do!

  2. I'll pass your compliment along to the Bald Eagle. Along with being good thieves, they're also quite vain. Unlike Owls...