Tag Archives: rosy’s eyes

Rosy’s News

Guest post by Sarah Higgins, who’s taking care of Rosy and Girl and many others. More to come!

There has not been an update on Rosy for a while as there was nothing new to report. Rosy’s sight still leaves a lot to be desired. Dr. Dan came to see him and measured his eyes in January and was able to report that the lenses are nearly perfect and that if everything were OK he should be able to see normally. But, and this is the big ‘but,’ although the fibrin has receded from his right eye he still can’t really see anything out of that eye. He can distinguish light and dark and some movement but will still try to fly through the wall if disturbed. It is assumed that there must have been some damage to the retina in that eye. The left eye was, at that time, filled yet again with the dreaded fibrin and there was discussion as to whether to operate for a third time. We all eventually agreed that we would not rush into this and would wait and see what happens.

rosy july 2009
Rosy in July, 2009

Girl at Navaisha, july 2009
Rosy’s Girl

Six months later it appears that the fibrin is beginning to recede. There is still a fair amount of it but it is definitely less and just perhaps Rosy can see a little round the outside of it. I’m excited about this and am now full of hope again, although I realise that whatever happens it will not happen instantly. Please keep sending your good thoughts to Rosy, he needs all the help he can get.

Rosy’s eye check up

Rosy the Crowned Eagle has not been improving as well as we hoped after two cataract operations. Dr. Dan Gradin, the ophthalmologist who did the operations, was going to be in Naivasha and he and Sarah Higgins had arranged a meeting on Saturday, January 24. Laila and I were able to meet them.

The last time I met Dan he was first in a floppy surgeon’s overalls, with mask and surgeon’s cap. After the surgery he morphed into a regular sort and took off on his heavy motorbike. On this occasion he was wearing a Scout Master’s uniform as he was in the middle of taking a number of children out camping.

We gathered up Rosy from his shed. Girl, his wife, was very distraught and hung from the roof. They both hate these examinations but it must be done.

The right eye, which looks the worst because of its torn pupil does see something. But it does not allow Rosy to see his perch properly or to fly up and sit with Girl. Last week we saw him take off from his perch and fly straight into a solid wall! The wall was fully lit, and surrounding it were deep shadows. If you squinted and pretended you were near blind you could understand that to him it might seem like open sky.

rosy right eye
Rosy’s right eye

Dan had a look at this eye and tested its refraction by bouncing light from a special gadget off the back of the retina. He was able to measure the eye’s focus, and although he said it was slightly too long-sighted he was pleased with the result. The smoky fibrin goo that had obscured the lens had receded allowing a completely clear path. But it does seem that although the lens is clear the inability of the eye to see clearly stems from a damaged retina. This eye on two occasions had suffered from glaucoma, and on the first occasion it was very severe and we wondered at the time if the retina would be permanently damaged.

The left eye, with its neat round pupil was obscured by a fibrin coat. The pupil itself acts as a matrix close enough to allow the fibrin to cling to it and bridge the gap.

Dan had the tough job of telling us that he felt the chances of improving Rosy’s sight was very slim. About as much chance as finding oil off the Kenya coast.

dan and simon examining rosy
Dan examining Rosy’s eyes

We released Rosy and he turned on us threateningly. He has guts!

Rosy may or may not undergo another operation. Dan first needs to communicate with some of his colleagues. What we do not want is to stress Rosy unnecessarily. If another operation will not improve his eyes then it makes no sense to try. The left eye might have a good retina. There are tests that can be done using a machine that measures retina function, but such a thing is not available in Kenya. If we knew the retina was OK then surgery to clear the lens would be advisable. It may be necessary to take Rosy to South Africa, or bring the necessary machines and technicians to Kenya.

Rosy remains enormously strong. He functions semi-normally in his huge shed. Girl is capable of breeding or even being released. Rosy cannot breed in this condition. We have discussed the idea of giving Girl her chance at a better life. But I am certain that if Girl goes out of Rosy’s life, he’ll have nothing to live for. Eagles mate for life, and although they will find a new partner if one dies, Rosy is likely to be confused and without much to do. We still have not given up hope.

If you love Rosy and Girl, Digg this story!