Grandfather Mountain eagle put to sleep

Posted July 26, 2010 5:09 p.m. EDT

Wilma the bald eagle spent most of her life at Grandfather Mountain.

— Wilma the bald eagle, a 25-year resident of the animal habitat at Grandfather Mountain, was put to sleep over the weekend, a spokeswoman said.

The eagle, which was at least 34 years old, had arthritis, was increasingly weak and was in declining health, said Christie Tipton, manager of the habitat.

Wilma came to Grandfather Mountain in 1981 after sustaining a gunshot wound in the western United States. "Wilma wasn't able to fly because of her injury," Tipton said in a statement Monday.  "She's in a better place now where she'll always be able to fly."