Auburn Mascot Suffering from Infection - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

June 18, 7:45 p.m.

Auburn Mascot Suffering from Infection

"Spirit" is an American Bald Eagle. "Spirit" is an American Bald Eagle.

It's a popular game day tradition at Auburn University--an eagle soars above the football stadium before the game. But that tradition is in jeopardy. "Spirit," the eagle, is sick and may not recover.

So far, 11 other birds at Auburn's Raptor Rehabilitation Center have died from the same infection. Doctors say with "Spirit," they're hoping for a better outcome, but they can't make any guarantees.

"Spirit" and his predecessor, "Tiger," were among those infected during a recent outbreak of Mycoplasma Gallisepticum, a bacteria dangerous only to birds. In some cases, it does not produce symptoms. But in others, it can ultimately lead to death.

The Raptor Rehabilitation Center specializes in treating birds and then releasing them back to the wild. Doctors say the bacteria first surfaced in January. "We think that a bird brought this in," said Dr. Jill Heatley. "The bird could have had it and not shown any signs, then get ill and spread it to other birds."

Doctors say right now, neither Spirit nor Tiger is showing any serious symptoms of the infection. And they don't appear to be doing as poorly as the birds who died. But in order to fly again at football games, Spirit would have to go through extensive training that may prove to be too much for him.

If it is determined that Spirit cannot return to his role as mascot, the dean of Auburn's School of Veterinary Medicine says the tradition will continue, even if it means finding a new eagle.

Reporter: Mark Bullock

  • NewsMore>>

  • Accused serial rapist and killer undetected working as cop

    Accused serial rapist and killer undetected working as cop

    Thursday, April 26 2018 2:39 AM EDT2018-04-26 06:39:08 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 3:43 AM EDT2018-04-26 07:43:20 GMT
    (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli). Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, left, talks to reporters about the arrest Joesph James DeAngelo, seen in photo, on suspicion of committing a string of violent crimes in the 1970's and 1980's after a news conference. ...(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli). Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, left, talks to reporters about the arrest Joesph James DeAngelo, seen in photo, on suspicion of committing a string of violent crimes in the 1970's and 1980's after a news conference. ...

    The suspected Golden State Killer became less prolific but deadlier after losing his job as a police officer.

    More >>

    The suspected Golden State Killer became less prolific but deadlier after losing his job as a police officer.

    More >>
  • Macron resists Trump's 'America first' in speech to Congress

    Macron resists Trump's 'America first' in speech to Congress

    Wednesday, April 25 2018 11:30 AM EDT2018-04-25 15:30:41 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 3:42 AM EDT2018-04-26 07:42:09 GMT
    (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais). French President Emmanuel Macron gestures as he is introduced before speaking to a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 25, 2018.(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais). French President Emmanuel Macron gestures as he is introduced before speaking to a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 25, 2018.
    French President Emmanuel Macron extolled the "special bond" between the United States and France during his speech in front of a joint meeting of Congress.More >>
    French President Emmanuel Macron extolled the "special bond" between the United States and France during his speech in front of a joint meeting of Congress.More >>
  • Geologists say North Korea's nuclear test site has collapsed

    Geologists say North Korea's nuclear test site has collapsed

    Wednesday, April 25 2018 9:28 PM EDT2018-04-26 01:28:35 GMT
    Thursday, April 26 2018 3:41 AM EDT2018-04-26 07:41:34 GMT
    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)
    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently announced an end to the nation’s nuclear testing. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed.

    More >>

    A study by Chinese geologists shows the mountain where North Korea has conducted five successive nuclear bomb tests has collapsed.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly