Port Alberni RCMP often deal with the ‘wild life’ in Port Alberni, but never quite like this.
Officers Theresa Thompson and Jason Lappa responded to calls about an injured bird causing a traffic jam on Highway 4 towards Sproat Lake on Tuesday afternoon, an RCMP press release noted.
The officers arrived at the scene and found a large male eagle hobbling on the highway as onlookers slowed down as they passed by. Lappa directed traffic while Thompson captured the bird by throwing a blanket over its head then placing it in a pet carrier she retrieved from her home.
The eagle was taken to the Errington Wildlife Recovery Centre where it is recovering from a broken wing, the release noted.
Thompson’s son is a bird enthusiast who attends bird camps every year. “She knew how to handle the eagle through what her son learned,” Cpl Jen Allan said.
The takedown technique isn’t taught at the RCMP training depot, Allan said. “You never know what you’re going to encounter with this job,” Allan said. “This wasn’t in the initial job description.”