Southwest Florida beachgoers helped save a bald eagle that crashed into the Gulf of Mexico.

Officials say went down about 200 yards offshore in Venice earlier this week. The bird eventually made its way to shore and authorities took it to a Nokomis veterinarian.

Dr. Jack Landess was treating the bird Friday. He said the bird was initially unable to fly because its wings were covered in salt water.

It's not clear how long it will take the eagle to recover.