BEAUMONT - A Great Egret struck by an arrow in Beaumont's west end has died, despite the efforts of a veterinarian who performed surgery on the bird.
Watch KFDM News at 6 for more on the story.
Dr. John Falgout of Beaumont West Animal Care on North Major Drive told KFDM News the arrow went through the Great Egret's thigh muscle and penetrated the breast muscle, and although it missed the major organs, it fractured the bird's left leg bone.
Dr. Falgout said in two hours of surgery Monday afternoon he was able to piece together 90% of the bone but was forced to euthanize the bird because he says it wouldn't have regained full use of its leg.
Beaumont Animal Services is searching for the person who's responsible for injuring the bird.
Investigators say Officer Ben Bundrick responded to a call Monday morning from a person living on Belvedere Drive who saw the egret going from yard to yard with an arrow, the type commonly used for target practice in archery, protruding from its body. The arrow was still protruding from the egret's back when Bundrick arrived.
He took the egret to Beaumont West Animal Care where Dr. John Falgout removed the arrow and will try to nurse the bird back to health. The bird is doing okay but will need x-rays and possibly surgery.
If you have information about the person who shot the egret with the bow and arrow, contact Animal Services at 838-3304 or Beaumont Crime Stoppers at 833-TIPS.
Great Egrets are a species of birds that are typically associated with nuisance heronries, but they're protected under Chapter 64 of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Code and title 50 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Even under nuisance conditions it takes a federal permit to legally kill the Great Egret.