STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Officials believe an American symbol was shot down with a bullet last week in Routt County, and they are trying to find the person responsible.
Steamboat Veterinary Hospital, supplied
Steamboat Veterinary Hospital’s Dr. Lee Meyring examines a bald eagle that was found Thursday along Routt County Road 80.
Steamboat Veterinary Hospital’s Dr. Lee Meyring went to the Born Free Wildlife Rehabilitation facility near Steamboat Springs Saturday morning to euthanize the bald eagle that was found injured alongside a road two days earlier.
“When I put that eagle down, it was the most significant sadness that I’ve ever experienced,” Meyring said.
One of the eagle’s legs was nearly severed, and there were bullet fragments found in its body, Meyring said. The most humane solution was to deliver pain medication and then euthanize it.
Tracy Bye, who runs Born Free, said before the eagle was euthanized, staff members brought him outside so he could see the surrounding mountains.
“He was alert and the wind was blowing in his feathers and everything,” Bye said.
After administering the shot, the bird slowly dropped its head and closed its eyes.