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Utah osprey rescue prompts trash warning

Published July 31, 2013 10:49 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Two Division of Wildlife Resources employees helped free a young osprey tangled in baling twine in its nest near Utah Lake earlier this week.

The rescue prompted a reminder by wildlife officials to Utahns, asking them to pick up trash whenever they see it in the wild because of its potential to harm animals.

The DWR workers were monitoring "fish hawk" nests when they spotted the osprey in its nest on a platform high above the ground, according to a news release.

Scott Root and Bob Walters wanted to help the bird but their ladder was too short. Root called the city of Spanish Fork and asked for assistance from the power department, the release said.

Vern Jackson and Richard Stoneman arrived shortly after in a boom truck. Stoneman and Walters were lifted to the platform to see if they could help the osprey.

With an angry parent osprey objecting to the operation, a towel was put over the young raptor and it was taken to the ground, the news release said. The twine was removed from the talons and legs of the osprey and the men were glad to see no permanent damage had been done to the bird. Walters, suffering a couple of deep scratches from the talons, released the bird and it flew off to join its parent.

This was the fourth osprey rescued from entanglement in baling twine or fishing line this year at Utah Lake, the DWR said.

All birds collect string, twine, rope and fishing line while constructing nests so wildlife officials are reminding Utahns they should properly dispose of such material and also anything they might see in the environment.