Saturday, January 31, 2009

Fowl Fouls - Danger From The Skies?

I think it's high time someone drew attention to the clear and present danger of bird attacks. While we blithely go about our lives, evil beady eyes are watching from the skies, awaiting the perfect opportunity to swoop in whatever it is that attacking birds do! I was shocked to learn how widespread the threat is.

I found this harrowing account on the Christian Science Monitor: "I was ducking this way, then ducking that way, trying to get away," Mr. Cooper says, recalling a few frenzied seconds where beaks flashed like tiny daggers. "I had no idea what was going on." Horrific!

During a well-documented grackle attack on Houston residents in 2005, Sylvia Velasquez recounts her heroism, "I hit him with a bottle. The other birds came, and one attacked my blouse and on my back."

Clearly shaken by the sheer scale of the horror, constable Wilbert Jue recounted, "They were just going crazy. They were attacking everybody that walked by."

In July of 2008, a woman was enjoying a stroll along the shore at Burnham-on-Sea, in Somerset, U.K., when a seagull swooped and stabbed at her head with its beak. She was rushed to the hospital, where her injuries were treated, according to the Guardian. In their account of the vicious attack, Burnham-on-the-sea press officer Mark Newman commented, "She was very shaken up and taken to A&E. There was an awful lot of blood and she required a tetanus injection. Otherwise she is OK. We all think of Hitchcock's film The Birds with something like this and here it is actually happening."

In 2005, a woman sued Lowe's, after she was attacked by a bird while at one of their home improvement centers. Her case was later dismissed, but I'm sure her trauma lives on.

According to the University of Florida; "Bird attacks usually consist of swoops, dives and chases by common yard birds, such as mockingbirds, blackbirds and bluejays; attacks at the beach or near the nesting grounds of least terns and gulls; in playing fields by burrowing owls' or near forested areas by raptors. Other forms of attacks include vocal castigations from perching birds; "mobbing" or ganging-up on the victim, which crows may do; or intentional defecation or regurgitation on the victim, which may occur in areas of concentration, such as rookeries."

Intentional defecation?! Obviously this menace must be dealt with! I recommend always carrying an umbrella when walking outdoors, and possible arming yourself with a rolled up newspaper or magazine. It also might be a good idea to use mouthwash and change clothes after eating eggs, to eliminate the scent, which could enrage neighborhood birds. And of course, you should already have your first aid kit/medicines with you at all times. Be aware, friends. Watch the skies!

1 comment:

  1. One day I got 3 or 4 birds, all in one day, I thought I would be cursed for life, they say its bad luck to hit them, and since I hot them boom, boom, boom back to back, I figured yep, I am doomed for life.

    Love reading the blog, and I have nominated you for an award!
    Stop by my blog to pick it up.