Missing: Bald eagle from French animal park

Dana the bald eagle is used to taking part in performances at the animal park

An 18-year-old bald eagle with a 2.2-metre wingspan is the subject of a major search operation in Brittany, after she became lost during a display at the Aquashow animal park in Finistère.

The animal park, which has sea life aquariums and operates bird shows, said the impressive eagle had managed to escape on April 26, and has still not been found.

Named Dana, the bird weighs 4.5kg, and is a “bald” eagle, meaning she has black feathers on her body, and a white feathered head.

She was born at the park, and has always lived there. She is used to captivity and is always fed by human keepers, and usually takes part in regular bird display shows at the park.

Park manager Pierre Poussard said that Dana habitually left the centre “two or three times a year” to fly further afield, but this is the first time that she has been gone for so long.

He said: “It is during one of our demonstrations that Dana went. She must have ‘taken high altitude’ very quickly due to strong winds, and must have got lost.”

Mr Poussard added that Dana usually wears a tracking device during performances, but it appeared not to be working properly.

Dana was reportedly seen in Lamballe (Côtes-d'Armor) late last week, but there have been no sightings since then. Anyone in the area who believes they have seen the eagle should call 02 98 70 03 03.

Best known as the symbol of the United States, bald eagles can live for up to 40 years.

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