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Sonora, Bald Eagle of Scottsdale

October 8, 2014 6 Comments

I drove to Clarkdale, AZ  last weekend to ride the Verde Valley Railroad with Sonora the bald eagle. She was brought to wildlife rescue as a very young bird with her wing badly broken. Today she can fly in her enclosure, but her wing never healed well enough for her to return to the wild. I have to say for a captive eagle, this girl gets around and continues to enjoy nature while she rides the train through the canyons. Her enclosure in Scottsdale is at Liberty Wildlife Refuge, at the home of a former vet of the Phoenix zoo, and her two handlers that accompany her on field trips obviously love her dearly. She is a pampered (not that it was her choice) suburban eagle with a soccer mom schedule of school events, train appearances, and other symbolic and educational obligations.    She seems happy, and everyone who gets to see her up close and personal is ecstatic while in her presence.  I was completely out of my mind. She flapped me on the head with her wing while I was standing next to her, which I consider to have been a super magical gift.  She didn’t hurt me at all, but I did get a sense of her power.  I want to say I am her greatest fan, but I suspect we all adore her at the same very high level.  She is just awesome.  If you have a chance to meet Sonora, don’t miss it.  She rides the train once a month for now.  She began her programs on the train in 2010 when she was 3.  Now she is a seasoned model and train enthusiast.  I can’t tell you how fun it is to meet her.


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