PHOENIX (KSAZ) - A red-tailed hawk got a second chance at life all because two Salt River Project employees were at the right place at the right time.
"Kind of a lucky thing that we happened to be working at that substation, we just arrived there. If would have been another week that we went to work at that substation then it could have been dead by then," said SRP Electrician Jacob Petersen.
It's was a typical September day at the SRP Agua Fria substation for electricians Petersen and Jeff Lewis. After completing some daily tasks they noticed something out of the ordinary.
"I said, hey look at that, Jacob said where, what is it, and we kind of couldn’t see it because it was way back in the corner," said Lewis.
That thing in the corner was a red-tailed hawk on the ground.
"There were a lot of doves in the area, so we thought it was camping out waiting for an attack and we thought we were going to get to see some national geographic stuff right in front of us," said Petersen.
But that's not what they ended up seeing. Instead, the bird hardly moved. They knew something wasn't right so they called for help.
"It had a disease that’s common out here, it’s call Triciminyisis, which is a protozoa that ends up in the throat, or mouth of the birds and it slowly grows and it can choke them off or starve them to death," explained Jan Miller of Liberty Wildlife.
Miller, along with a SRP environmental scientist stepped in to provide care and after months of medical treatment, the hawk was able to be released into the wild by the two men credited with saving its life.
They also got to release another red-tailed hawk that was ready for release.
"We know that they know how to kill live pray, they’re flying perfect, so fingers crossed they’re going to do great," said Miller.