Tennessee Wildfire Massive Bald Eagle Evacuation Underway at Dollywood

11/29/2016 8:11 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

1129-dollywood-eaglesupdate_graphic_red_bar9:55 AM PST -- Dolly just released a statement on the fire, saying, "I am praying for all the families affected by the fire and the firefighters who are working so hard to keep everyone safe. It is a blessing that my Dollywood theme park, the DreamMore Resort and so many businesses in Pigeon Forge have been spared."update_grey_gray_barDolly Parton's Dollywood is under siege from wildfires which have triggered a rescue mission for several bald eagles inside one of the theme park's sanctuaries.  

Dollywood, which is near the fires raging in Gatlinburg, TN, is also home to the American Eagle Foundation -- a group dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating birds of prey. The group shelters nearly a dozen bald eagles, and we're told staffers rounded up 50 of the birds Monday night.

We're told there are still a handful left to be captured and moved. The foundation's President, Al Cecere, tells TMZ the sanctuary's location puts the birds at serious risk for smoke inhalation. They'll remain at a nearby convention center until the air is clear and the park is safe.

Dollywood evacuated guests Monday, but so far firefighters have kept the flames at bay.

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