Local 4 staffers rescue hawk

Downed Red-tailed Hawk found laying by entrance to WDIV Local 4

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The hawk was covered with a cloth and gently placed in a cardboard box to be driven to a wildlife rehabilitator.

DETROIT - A bird of prey got himself into a bit of unknown trouble in Downtown Detroit.

Tuesday, the Red-tailed Hawk was found just feet away from the entrance to the WDIV Local 4 building on West Lafayette.

Fortunately for the hawk, concerned staffers spotted the bird, who was lying motionless on the sidewalk.

The hawk was placed in a cardboard box and driven to wildlife rehabilitator Linda Bianco.

IMAGES: Hawk rescue

Bianco, a federally licensed raptor rehabilitator, operates Spirit Filled Wings -- a non-profit organization in Oakland County which treats and then releases nearly 100 injured birds of prey each year.

Bianco quickly determined the Red-tailed was a young male, although it was unclear why the bird was grounded or if it would survive.

~Rescued Hawk in Bianco's care~

It wasn't a good sign that the hawk was laying out in the open near people, Bianco explained. It was likely a sign that the bird was sick or injured.

"He is under weight and was dehydrated but had no physical trauma," Bianco wrote in an update to Local 4 late Wednesday.  

Tips on what to do if you find an orphaned or injured raptor.

Distinctive tails:

Red-tailed Hawks can be identified by their distinctive brick red tail. They are a common species of hawk found in the United States and across the continent.

Hawks are proficient hunters with a keen-eye in the sky. They feed on rodents, such as mice or rats and also on ground squirrels, rabbits and reptiles.

Like most birds, Hawks form a strong pair-bond and mate for life. Their preferred habitat is often a field with a high perch suitable to watch for prey.

These birds, however, have adapted to urban environments and can often be seen perched on telephone poles along busy roads.

For now, the rescued Hawk is alive and doing well under Bianco's care. Spirit Filed Wings is volunteer based and operates solely off of public donations.

For more information on how you can help fund the rehabilitation efforts for Michigan's injured and majestic birds of prey visit spiritfilledwings.org

Staffers in the Local 4 newsroom have fingers crossed in hopes the raptor will pull through and fly free again. We will keep you posted!

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