Read part 1, when good transmitters go bad, here.
Jeff returned shortly with Bane! He had moved, but luckily not far. We contacted the transmitter manufacturer, who graciously offered to repair the faulty transmitter and have it back to us in a week. While that is very fast turnaround, we didn’t want to keep Bane in captivity for a week.
Thankfully we had another option. When Jaydin was predated last fall, we were able to remove his barely-used transmitter and have been storing it ever since. So we decided to replace the faulty transmitter with Jaydin’s and do the surgery that very day to minimize Bane’s time away from home.
Surgery went smoothly and we put Bane in an enclosure to rest overnight. As you’d expect given his namesake, Bane showed no fear throughout the process. He didn’t rattle when captured, restrained for anaesthesia, or when we periodically checked on him during recovery.
We released Bane the following morning at his capture location and watched him slowly crawl away. It may seem a little harsh to dump an animal outside so soon after surgery, but remember this is his home. It is probably more stressful for a wild animal to be inside than outside in familiar surroundings. Bane was free to choose a comfortable spot with appropriate conditions to heal.
We waited a few days to check on him again – finding a balance between leaving him alone and making sure he’s OK. He moved and appeared to be hunting when we located him. In fact, he looked like he had already gotten a meal! Even though the last time he had seen us we captured him, he doesn’t rattle or seem to mind our presence. That’s our Bane – even a major surgery won’t slow him down!