A U.S. Army veteran rescued a bald eagle that was entangled in a rope and was hanging from a tree about 70 feet from the ground.
Jason Galvin used a .22-caliber rifle with a scope to fire about 150 shots at the rope tangled around the eagle’s leg in Rush City, Minnesota, according to a Facebook post from his wife, Jackie, on July 1. The bird was hanging upside down near the couple’s cabin.
A local official told them they couldn’t do anything to help the eagle—even though it had been there for nearly three days. They believed the bird had died.
“I told them they were wrong and it was very much alive and somebody needed to help it immediately! They all said sorry but there was nothing they could do,” Jackie wrote. “I told Jason he had to shoot it free! He was nervous as he didn’t want to get in trouble for shooting at an eagle but I know with his sharp shooter skills that if anyone would save this eagle it was him.”
Jason then borrowed a neighbor’s .22 rifle, which had a scope. But even then, shooting at the rope was a perilous maneuver, as it was windy and he didn’t want to hit the eagle.
“An hour and a half later and 150 bullets, the eagle broke free from the branch and fell 75 feet into the trees of the woods,” she wrote, adding that a conservation officer “gave Jason permission to try to save this beautiful bird.”
She also posted photos of the bird hanging from the tree. They named the bird “Freedom.”
“What an amazing hero, my Army Veteran saving an eagle on 4th of July Weekend!” she wrote of her husband.
For his part, Jason said it was a “good weekend for it to happen.”
“Fourth of July, you know, that’s our bird. I can’t let it sit there,” he told KARE-TV.
According to KARE, the bird is recovering at the University of Minnesota’s Raptor Center.