America's national bird got caught in a storm drain in Florida on Thursday and sparked a run on metaphorical musings online.
The grate entanglement resulted from an aerial battle between two birds. One eagle ended up on top of the other, but eventually flew away. The second bird slipped down in the drain, requiring a rescue effort.
Florida TV station WFTV documented the rescue of the 5-year-old eagle. She is now in the care of the Florida Audubon Center for Birds of Prey. The bird suffered chest and leg punctures along with a cracked beak.
Social media users immediately went to bat with comparisons between the eagles' predicament and the state of the US after the recently concluded contentious presidential election between Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and now President-elect Donald Trump.
Some optimistic people looked at photos and footage of the two birds and concluded that the bird on top was trying to protect its friend. According to the Audubon Center, that wasn't the case. "There was no mate, it was a territory fight," the center writes on Facebook, further hammering home the election metaphor.
The storm-drain eagle isn't the first one to stand as a symbol for recent current events. In October, a bald eagle got trapped in a car grille, inspiring a slew of social-media analogies.
The latest rescue eagle is set to stay in the custody of the Audubon Center until is has recovered from its injuries. It will then be released back into the wild. With any luck, that eventual act of freedom will stand as its own symbol of hope for an ideologically divided country.