New Eagle Arrives At Grandfather Mountain Eagle Habitat In North Carolina

Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Griffin the bald eagle sits on a perch above Sitka, the newest addition to the Grandfather Mountain Animal Habitats.  Sitka arrived from the Alaska Raptor Center October 16 and is adapting to life in the eagle habitat with Griffin very well.
Griffin the bald eagle sits on a perch above Sitka, the newest addition to the Grandfather Mountain Animal Habitats. Sitka arrived from the Alaska Raptor Center October 16 and is adapting to life in the eagle habitat with Griffin very well.
- photo by Landis Taylor

A new bald eagle arrived at Grandfather Mountain Wednesday and was introduced to Griffin, the bald eagle who has been living in the habitat since May 2013.  The eagle came from the Alaska Raptor Center and has been named after the town where the center is located, Sitka.

The sex of the raptor is not currently known. The sex of a bald eagle is usually determined by the bird's size but because Sitka is between the typical size of a male and female this has not be determined.  A blood sample was drawn from the bird before it left Alaska and the test results should be announced in the next 10 days.

Sitka had suffered an injury to its right wing before arriving at the Alaska Raptor Center and was deemed unable to survive in the wild.  Before being released into the habitat at Grandfather Mountain; Lee Bolt, DVM of Sweeten Creek Animal and Bird Hospital in Asheville, N.C; performed a medical check on the raptor and said that it looked very healthy.  The age of the bird is not known but darker feathers on its head may indicate that it is around five years old.

Sitka's introduction to the eagle habitat and to Griffin is going very well.  As expected the raptor is showing some signs of stress and anxiety but overall the habitat staff members and Dr. Bolt couldn't ask for a better transition.  Staff members have observed both eagles flying to be on the same perch as the other bird.

The animal habitats at Grandfather Mountain were completely closed for an hour when the bird was being released into the habitat.  Limited access to the other habitat animals was available for park guests later in the day.  As eagles are easily stressed and Sitka will be very sensitive to the new sights and sounds of Grandfather Mountain, the habitat access will remain somewhat limited to guests for the next week or two.  While the pathway between the cougar habitat and eagle habitat will remain closed, guests should be able to access each habitat (deer, otter, eagle, black bear and cougar).

The Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation established to preserve Grandfather Mountain, operate the nature park in the public interest and participate in educational research activities.  

For more information phone 800 468-7325 or plan a trip at www.grandfather.com.

Asheville veterinarian Dr. Lee Bolt (right) conducts a health check on Sitka the bald eagle before it is released into its new home on Grandfather Mountain.  Sitka came from the Alaska Raptor Center and has a wing injury that prevents the bird from being able to survive in the wild.
Asheville veterinarian Dr. Lee Bolt (right) conducts a health check on Sitka the bald eagle before it is released into its new home on Grandfather Mountain. Sitka came from the Alaska Raptor Center and has a wing injury that prevents the bird from being able to survive in the wild.
- Photo2 by Landis Taylor

Crabtree Farms Offers Fall Gardening Workshop

In response to a growing interest in fall backyard gardening, local non-profit, Crabtree Farms is offering educational opportunities and affordable, healthy plant starts to help Chattanoogans grow their own food this fall.   “While most people are excited to plant their gardens in spring or summer, there is a growing number of people who realize that they can enjoy ... (click for more)

Star Party At Cloudland Canyon Will Be Aug. 23

The Summer Constellations will be the topic of the upcoming Star Party at Cloudland Canyon State Park on Saturday, Aug. 23 .  Sponsored by the staff and friends of Cloudland Canyon State Park, the program will be presented by members of the Barnard Astronomical Society and will be held at the tennis courts. The program begins at 8 p.m. and participants will learn ... (click for more)

EPB Says It Did Not Overbill The City; Says City Got $685,877 Break

EPB officials said Tuesday that an exhaustive audit of its street light contract with the city showed that it did not overbill the city. Instead, it said it found that the city was underbilled $685,877. EPB said it only goes back one year on errors so the amount owed by the city would be $178,314. Officials said that would be discussed with the city. Stan Sewell, the city's ... (click for more)

Citizens To Comment Next Tuesday On Sound Control Ordinance That Allows Higher Sound Around Downtown Clubs

Citizens will be allowed to comment next Tuesday on a new Sound Control Ordinance that allows higher sound from nightclubs in a downtown Controlled Sound Boundary. Track 29 behind the Chattanooga Choo Choo, that has drawn the wrath of some nearby Southside residents, is within the boundary, which goes from Fourth Street to Main Street. The hearing before the City Council ... (click for more)

The Truth- From Weston’s Sister

I try not to read the negative articles and opinions about my older brother. Growing up around politics, I learned a long time ago that thick skin is not only necessary, it’s paramount. But this time, the lies and the rumors and the inaccurate information has gone too far. It’s too ridiculous for me to ignore. So let’s clear a few things up: Weston and I do not “come ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Oscar Brock’s True Passion

I don’t pay much attention to the Hamilton County School Board. Once the moon and the stars aligned behind Superintendent Rick Smith, you hear very little, if anything, from the nine-member council that oversees an annual budget of almost $400 million and employs 4,480 people. So chew this for a minute: approximately 2,000 of those people are not teachers. Yes, there are 78 principals ... (click for more)