It was an experience one B.C. couple won’t soon forget.
On July 21, Mary Anne Goater, a biology teacher at Nanaimo District Secondary School, and her husband Tim Goater, a biology professor at Vancouver Island University, were going on their first canoe trip of the summer with their six-month-old Labrador puppy Bo.
They were paddling off the coast of Lantzville when a mature adult bald eagle flew over their canoe and dove straight into the ocean.
“We assumed it was a fish and expected it to fly off with its catch,” Mary Anne said in an email.
“But it crash-landed in the ocean and could not fly away.”
They assumed they would have to save it, as eagles have been known to drown too far from shore, but the logistics of that seemed impossible.
“And more importantly, how would a six-month-old Labrador puppy cope with this new shipmate?”
It turns out the eagle could take care of itself.
The Goaters followed the eagle as it swam to the shore and made it safely with its catch in its claws.
“Who knew that eagles could swim butterfly?” Mary Anne said.