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July 28, 2014

Bald eagles survive crash landing at Duluth airport

A bald eagle is recovering in St. Paul after being wounded in a mid-air battle with another eagle before making a crash landing at the Duluth International Airport.

Randy Hanzal, a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources conservation officer, tells the Duluth News Tribune that the two birds locked talons and weren’t able to separate before crashing onto the concrete tarmac on Sunday.

An airport employee who witnessed the eagles fall called the DNR.

Hanzal loaded the birds into his truck, covered them with blankets and jackets and strapped them down to transport them to Wildwoods, a wildlife rehabilitation organization in Duluth.

En route, one of the eagles was able to break free and fly away.

The other was eventually transferred to the University of Minnesota Raptor Center where the bird is recovering from deep puncture wounds in its leg and abdomen, but the overall prognosis is good.