James Elliott (Center for Birds of Prey) holds the rehabilitated eagle. (Photo: Zach McKinley)

When Mrs. Montgomery received the call from Grainger McKoy on March 3, she knew we had to respond. A rehabilitated bald eagle, a female juvenile, was about to be released out at Hobcaw and it would be a sight to behold. Mrs. Montgomery packed her fifth-graders into the car and Dr. Gates packed his seniors. The little group watched with excitement as the bird took flight in the wild for the first time since getting rescued.

Students were impressed at the sheer size of the bird and her unusual plumage.” She didn’t have a white head,” said Amelia and Zach agreed: “She was a blonde.” James Elliott, director of the Center for Birds of Prey, told us that bald eagles don’t get their white head feathers until they are five or six years old. According to Clayton Stairs of The Georgetown Times who was also present, this was the first-ever eagle release from Hobcaw Barony. We were so privileged to be there!