The Bird Lady is coming back to Boca Grande, and she’s bringing some feathered friends with her

March 11, 2016
By Marcy Shortuse

■ BY SUE ERWIN
Bird rescuer Doris Mager will present a special discussion entitled “Birds of Prey” at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, March 16 at the Boca Grande Community Center Auditorium.
Mager, 90, rescues and takes care of injured birds. bird lady web
Former Governor Bob Graham has named her “The Eagle Lady of Florida.” She has been visiting Boca Grande for 35 years, giving presentations about her rescue efforts.
Originally from Connecticut, she lived in Apopka, Florida for 40 years.
“I watched Florida get destroyed. All those big, beautiful old trees were cut down so they could make highways,” she said.
She moved to Maitland, FL and was hired by the Audubon Society in 1963.
“I was hired to work in the store, and people would bring in little injured birds in boxes. In 1963, someone brought in a Red-Tailed Hawk with an infected foot. Everyone else walked away, so I took him home and healed him with Epsom salt and warm water,” Mager said.
She released the bird one month later and soon became known as “The Bird Lady.”
“There weren’t any rescue sanctuaries in those days, so they would just let whoever cared enough about the birds treat them. Now they have programs to train you how to handle the birds of prey. It can be quite dangerous, and you can get hurt badly,” she said, recalling a few bad encounters she has had with a few of the birds.
Mager lives in North Carolina and continues to travel in her van throughout the United States, presenting educational programs with “E.T.,” the Great Horned Owl and “Impy,” the Screech Owl.
She often will present two shows in different locations on the same day.
She has a friend who is coming in from Massachusetts to help with the show.
“He’s really a great volunteer; he helps me with so much,” she said.
Mager said she enjoys giving the presentations, because people really seem to enjoy seeing the birds at her show.
After the educational lecture, be sure to have your camera ready for photos with the birds.
Admission to the event is free.
The event is an offering of the Lee County Parks & Recreation Department. The program is sponsored by the Boca Grande Woman’s Club.
Mager said this would be her last presentation in Boca Grande, because she is planning to move to the state of Washington soon.
For more information on Mager, visit theeaglelady.com.