Cooper’s Hawk returns to wild after being rehabilitated at Pelican Harbor Seabird Station

MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - A rescued Cooper’s Hawk has been released back into the wild after rehabilitating at Pelican Harbor Seabird Station in Miami.

The bird was found on the ground after he had fallen from his nest at Normandy Shores Gold Course, located at 2401 Biarritz Drive, in Miami Beach on May 16.

“It was weak. It was kind of not proud. It was very vulnerable,” said Connor Green, who found the bird.

The City of Miami Beach partnered with the Pelican Harbor Seabird Station to release the hawk on Thursday morning.

The Cooper’s Hawk was raised at the station with four other orphaned hawks.

“We were able to raise it with four other baby hawks,” said Christopher Boykin, executive director of the Pelican Harbor Seabird Station, “and it actually underwent flight conditioning and live prey training with our partners at the Florida Keys Wild Bird Center.”

All of the baby hawks had to be taught how to eat, hunt and fly.

“We also did some live prey testing with the hawks to make sure that once they are released back in the wild, they are able to find prey and successfully hunt it,” said Adam Manglitz with the Florida Keys Wild Bird Center.

Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber had the honor of opening the cage and releasing the hawk.

His caretakers were sad to see him go but are confident he will survive and thrive on his own.

“It’s really exciting after all these months to get it back into the wild with its family, so it can grow up and reproduce and breed and contribute to the local bird population,” said Boykin.

While other hawks migrate through the Miami Beach area during Spring and Fall, Cooper’s Hawks are seen year-round.

On average, the hawks in the area have an average life span of 12 years.

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