Mapping drone sent to a watery grave by a Bald Eagle

An Upper Peninsula bald eagle launched an airborne attack on a drone operated by a Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) pilot last month, tearing off a propeller and sending the aircraft to the bottom of Lake Michigan.

The brazen eagle vs. EGLE onslaught took place near Escanaba in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula on July 21 when EGLE environmental quality analyst and drone pilot Hunter King was mapping shoreline erosion for use in the agency’s efforts to document and help communities cope with high water levels.

King was watching his video screen as the drone beelined for home, but suddenly it began twirling furiously. “It was like a really bad rollercoaster ride,” said King. When he looked up, the drone was gone, and an eagle was flying away. A nearby couple, whose pastimes include watching the local eagles attack seagulls and other birds, later confirmed they saw the eagle strike something but were surprised to learn it was a drone. Both King and the couple said the eagle appeared uninjured as it flew from the scene of the crime.

The eagle was fine. Rescue expeditions failed to find the EGLE.

2 thoughts on “Mapping drone sent to a watery grave by a Bald Eagle

  1. Nature, red in tooth and claw says:

    “See a Bald Eagle and Octopus Tangled in Epic Battle” (Smithsonian) https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/salmon-fisherman-found-bald-eagle-fighting-octopus-180973781/
    The giant Pacific octopus is the largest octopus in the world and can reach 600 pounds and 30 feet in length. On average, however, they weigh in at around 110 pounds. The eagles weigh between 6.5 and 14 pounds. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/12/eagle-octopus-canadians-rescue-bird-battle-giant-mollusc

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