My Very First AP Wire Hit
Charlie wouldn’t understand the festivities happening around him because he’s a wild animal, a red-tail hawk eying the room in a way one does to understand their surroundings and survive.
He’s the oldest living red-tail hawk in the entire world as defined in the longevity records by falconers. His home is Washington State University with the Raptor Club. Calculations have estimated his age to equal about 234 human years.
If a human being lived 234 years, they’d been born just after the signing of the United State’s Declaration of Independence. They’d live through one civil and two world wars. They’d see a man walk on the moon.
A certain birthday boy, Charlie, did not witness all those things, but this is just an illustration to say how old he is. It was his 31st birthday on Thursday and he was surrounded by friends and acquaintances.
I say friends because the members of the Washington State University Raptor Club love him. His fellow birds really aren’t social so let’s call them acquaintances.
Next thing I know, the story was picked up by the AP. A fellow producer texted me while I was in the grocery store taking pictures of a dead fly on a package of pickled radishes. I may or may not have jumped up and down.
PULLMAN, Wash. - A 31-year-old red tail hawk living in Washington State University’s raptor club may be the oldest of his kind.
KXLY TV reports that Charlie the hawk’s handlers celebrated his birthday Friday. They calculate that at 31, Charlie has lived the equivalent of about 234 human years.
This is a career first for me. Excuse me while I twirl.