After anesthetizing the crane, Vet Leslie and Certified Vet Tech Chris Lewellen perform a thorough exam. This includes examining the crane's overall body condition, feeling its wings for soft tissue swelling, broken bones or dislocations; checking its eye condition; and drawing blood.
The fracture that Leslie noted during the exam was caused by a gunshot! Note the pellet still embedded in the crane's wing.
Due to the amount of time passed since the injury, the bones have actually healed fused together. The two separate ends are noted by the arrows. The white mass between the two bones is the new fused material.
A permanent injury such as this typically requires the animal to be euthanized since it cannot survive in the wild. Sometimes though, zoos and other licensed organizations are searching for specific animals. This crane is fortunate that the Raptor Education Group, Inc., (REGI) in Antigo, Wis., is looking for an adult crane to keep the many orphaned cranes that they raise company. Many thanks to Avian Nursery volunteer Lisa S., for transporting the crane over to Antigo, its new home!