WSU College of Veterinary Medicine nurse injured Red-Tail Hawk with nerve damage

PULLMAN, WA - Veterinarians at Washington State University are nursing a Red-Tailed Hawk back to health, but it's still not clear if she'll be able to be released back into the wild.

Idaho Fish and Game brought her to the WSU Veterinary teaching hospital last Friday with a very unique wound.

"It's certainly not a gunshot wound, there's no metal in there," said WSU Veterinary Teaching Hospital Exotics and Wildlife Department Head Dr. Nickol Finch. "The bone is all still in tact, but there's a heck of a soft tissue damage there."

Finch said the bird is severely underweight, but she's eating on her own, which means she'll likely survive in the hospital. However, Doctor Finch said she may not be releasable after recovery due to nerve damage. That would prevent her from being able to hunt.

Red-Tailed Hawks are one of the most common raptors found in this region, so it's hard to find a care facility for them if they can't be released into the wild.