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December 18, 2012 8:28 PM   Subscribe

Golden eagle snatches kid. (Warning: slow motion section features inexplicable music choice.)
posted by flapjax at midnite (333 comments total) 41 users marked this as a favorite

 
This is going to make an awesome political ad one day.
posted by b1tr0t at 8:32 PM on December 18, 2012 [6 favorites]


Holy. Shit.
posted by rtha at 8:32 PM on December 18, 2012 [15 favorites]


Is this like the "killer whale eats man on the beach!" video? YouTube has turned me into a very suspicious jerk.
posted by Brocktoon at 8:32 PM on December 18, 2012


Why does living in the 21st century feel increasingly like living in the prologue to a really bleak sci-fi story?
posted by The Whelk at 8:33 PM on December 18, 2012 [29 favorites]


I was expecting a kid of the "Baah, baah" kind.

holy shit.
posted by dunkadunc at 8:34 PM on December 18, 2012 [7 favorites]


Wait, this seemed bleak to you?!

/my priorities are perhaps misplaced
posted by rtha at 8:34 PM on December 18, 2012 [6 favorites]


My wife and I spotted this vid a little while ago, and we were curious when it would show up here. Oh, and a quote from my beloved wife:

"Inexplicable? More like AWESOME!"
posted by KHAAAN! at 8:35 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


Just today I was reading this article about the Taung Child who was a baby who was killed by an eagle about 3 million years ago. As I was reading it I was trying to picture what that day must have been like for their family. So this is a timely post, thanks.

I kind of love the choice of music, as long as the baby was ok.
posted by bleep at 8:35 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


God. Damn. This is nightmare fuel.
posted by wabbittwax at 8:35 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wow.
posted by gingerbeer at 8:36 PM on December 18, 2012


Wait, this seemed bleak to you?!

EAGLES ARE TURNING TODDLERS INTO SNACKS.
posted by The Whelk at 8:36 PM on December 18, 2012 [14 favorites]


I bet if the eagle is watching this on YouTube now it is SO embarrassed.
posted by Greg Nog at 8:36 PM on December 18, 2012 [62 favorites]


Ok. What? HOLY SHIT
posted by Mike Mongo at 8:37 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well, it's bleak for the golden eagle. Gotta go find lunch somewhere else.
posted by gingerbeer at 8:37 PM on December 18, 2012 [6 favorites]


Just curious where Dar the Beastmaster was in all of this sending his eagle to snatch the girl from the priests about to sacrifice her to their gods?
posted by Randwulf at 8:37 PM on December 18, 2012 [6 favorites]


What gingerbeer said. From that angle, I can see the bleakness.
posted by rtha at 8:38 PM on December 18, 2012


"Inexplicable? More like AWESOME!"

I kind of love the choice of music


One person's inexplicable is another's... not inexplicable! And that's a good thing!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:39 PM on December 18, 2012


Chariots of fire. The running.
posted by chrismc at 8:39 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


What gingerbeer said. From that angle, I can see the bleakness.

Collaborator.
posted by The Whelk at 8:39 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thank goodness for shoddily-made toddler jackets.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:40 PM on December 18, 2012 [6 favorites]


It was totally the monkey hat. Eagles love monkeys.
posted by Mid at 8:40 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


Is it bad that I was disappointed when the eagle let go?
posted by cthuljew at 8:41 PM on December 18, 2012 [9 favorites]


I, too, was rooting for the eagle.
posted by Justinian at 8:41 PM on December 18, 2012 [12 favorites]


I love how blasé the guys are. "whatever, an aigle tried to jack my baby, quoi. ça se passe de temps en temps."
posted by threeants at 8:41 PM on December 18, 2012 [69 favorites]


That poor eagle. If not for fat, post-agrarian human children she might have had a meal.
posted by clarknova at 8:42 PM on December 18, 2012 [10 favorites]


Whoa.
posted by gaspode at 8:42 PM on December 18, 2012


(Is it news to anyone else that we even have these in Canada?)
posted by Sys Rq at 8:43 PM on December 18, 2012


Wow, and we got in at *checks* about 300 views. Where did you find this, flapjax?
posted by Scientist at 8:43 PM on December 18, 2012


"Damn, kid. Ease up on the happy meals."
posted by fuse theorem at 8:43 PM on December 18, 2012


Golden eagles are a worldwide phenomenon, Sys Rq. Look up! (Unless you mean toddlers.)
posted by rtha at 8:44 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is basically the best thing I have ever seen.

Earlier I declared the discovery of a spider than builds a fake spider decoy in its web as "The Best Thing I Have Ever Seen", but clearly, I was lying.
posted by primalux at 8:45 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


maybe the eagle was trying to grab the young human and bring it to the Great Spire where it will train as the Eagleborn to defend the world against the Octopus Uprising now being planned in the deepest heart of the ocean?
posted by The Whelk at 8:45 PM on December 18, 2012 [28 favorites]


Golden Eagle range map.
posted by gingerbeer at 8:45 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well, it's bleak for the golden eagle. Gotta go find lunch somewhere else.

Pretty sure Montreal's not short on pidgeons and squirrels.
posted by maryr at 8:46 PM on December 18, 2012


Anyone else here see March of the Penguins? At one point, there's this asshole bird, see, that manages to isolate a tiny penguin chick from its parents, and it's about to eat the chick. And at that moment I wanted to reach through the screen and kill that asshole bird. If I could remember what kind of bird it was, I would totally be that-bird-ist. That kind of cuteness is just off-limits to predation, and if you go there, you're over the line.

What I'm saying is, Imma punch that eagle.
posted by Jpfed at 8:46 PM on December 18, 2012 [14 favorites]


...the Octopus Uprising...

I always ask people I meet which they think will destroy humanity: ants, squid or crows.

Ants are the obvious heavy-hitter, but squid have all those clever tentacles. I think the crows are up to something, though.
posted by cthuljew at 8:48 PM on December 18, 2012 [5 favorites]


A thought:

The kid appears to be okay. That jacket he was wearing looks pretty bulky, so cuts from razor sharp golden eagle talons are hopefully minimal. And if not, well, that kid is going to have one hell of an awesome story, with video to back it up, explaining his scars.
posted by KHAAAN! at 8:48 PM on December 18, 2012


Top-ranked YouTube comment:

That eagle would have raised that child and that child would have grown into Eagle Man and defended the forests.
posted by KokuRyu at 8:48 PM on December 18, 2012 [92 favorites]


Where did you find this, flapjax?

The eagle swooped down onto my veranda and left a scrap of paper with the URL on it. Bird's looking to get famous.

I actually have had people contact me, about 3 or 4 times, just random people (via email if they've managed to get mine, or through the contact window at my website), suggesting I post something of theirs to Metafilter. Incredible.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:50 PM on December 18, 2012 [11 favorites]


maryr: Pretty sure Montreal's not short on pidgeons and squirrels

Seriously. I'm thinking that eagle just got greedy.
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:51 PM on December 18, 2012


The eagle swooped down onto my veranda and left a scrap of paper with the URL on it. Bird's looking to get famous.

So you're saying, a little bird told you?
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:51 PM on December 18, 2012 [11 favorites]


I always ask people I meet which they think will destroy humanity: ants, squid or crows.

The crows can be brought into an uneasy alliance, they're not trustworthy but they can be trusted for basic land-dwelling/spinal-cord solidarity if nothing else. The ants are an X factor, remote and difficult to read, they can go either way but they also understand the value of co-operations and symbiosis, they can reasoned with in their fashion.

The squid? Loyal to no one, united in hate, ruthless and cunning and thousand fold. They want their domain back and they want it back now.
posted by The Whelk at 8:52 PM on December 18, 2012 [18 favorites]


OMG, that music choice is genius and MAKES the video. I ROFL'd so hard.
posted by Bwithh at 8:53 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm thinking that eagle just got greedy.

Hey, c'mon, give an eagle a break. It's the holiday season, few chrissakes: *everybody* wants a big, special meal for the family around this time of year.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:53 PM on December 18, 2012 [7 favorites]


So you're saying, a little bird told you?

That bird look little to you?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:54 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


I was really hoping for the Benny Hill song, but this will have to suffice.
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 8:54 PM on December 18, 2012 [6 favorites]


The music, and that Eagle Wilhelm Scream. Damn glad that eagle dropped the kid when it did. Amazing.
posted by Xoebe at 8:54 PM on December 18, 2012


This is a short video I took of a juvenile redtail swooping down very close to a picnicking family. There was a small child with them. No one appeared to notice the bird.
posted by rtha at 8:55 PM on December 18, 2012


Oh dear Ganymede...
posted by Mercaptan at 8:56 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


You've seen the videos where golden eagles fly away with young goats, right?
What if the kid had been dropped from 20 feet instead of 3 feet, or dropped on the road?
This could have been far worse. Wow.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 8:57 PM on December 18, 2012 [12 favorites]


The Whelk, whatever is being planned in the deepest heart of the ocean, you can bet we aren't going to enjoy it.
posted by brennen at 8:57 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


(Is it news to anyone else that we even have these in Canada?)

I live in Victoria, BC and my parents live close to the water. There's a golden eagle that lives along the coastline near their house and flies from tree to tree in about a 4-5 mile radius. I've seen it on occasion, darkening the skies. It's fucking huge. It probably has about an 8-foot wingspan if I had to guess. I've learned to watch the childrens if they're outside. Small dogs, cats, babies are all fair game.
posted by jimmythefish at 8:58 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


This kid video definitely has the second best use of an eagle scream ever.
posted by cthuljew at 8:58 PM on December 18, 2012 [5 favorites]


oh merde
posted by stbalbach at 8:59 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


To be a pedantic birder -- that's actually a Red-Tail Hawk scream, not an eagle. Bald Eagles chirp like little birds.
posted by gingerbeer at 9:00 PM on December 18, 2012 [18 favorites]


This video definitely has the second best use of an eagle scream yt ever.

Heh. That's actually a redtail call. Gingerbeer will be along in a minute with an eagle call.
posted by rtha at 9:01 PM on December 18, 2012 [24 favorites]


Bald Eagle chirping.
posted by gingerbeer at 9:01 PM on December 18, 2012 [24 favorites]


Mount Royal? I sense an Epic Meal Time mash up.
posted by phyrewerx at 9:01 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


(dammit!)
posted by rtha at 9:01 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


Timing.
posted by gingerbeer at 9:02 PM on December 18, 2012 [20 favorites]


Bald Eagles make the most adorable kitten noises.
posted by The Whelk at 9:02 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


A couple of years back I was at the San Diego Zoo and I noticed that the meerkat enclosure was basically uncovered, and that got me wondering if birds of prey ever swooped down and grabbed themselves a little snack on the wing. I asked the zookeeper, who explained that the meerkats are very good at spotting incoming predators, but every once in a while one of them'll get nabbed by a particularly lucky raptor of some sort.

She also explained that there were two red eagles living outside the zoo but nearby, and that the zookeepers would feed them, because otherwise they'd fly into the zoo and grab whatever newborn animals they could reasonably carry off. So snatching this kid doesn't seem like too much of a stretch.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 9:03 PM on December 18, 2012 [5 favorites]


And, for completeness, here's a Golden Eagle.
posted by gingerbeer at 9:03 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


The last time I went eagle watching, I was scoping out a nesting bald eagle pair at Lake Chabot in the Oakland Hills. The female proceeded to hunt ducklings for a good half an hour, though she didn't catch any. I have some pretty funny pictures from that day.

What I'm trying to say is that eagles obviously base their prey choices on cuteness.
posted by primalux at 9:05 PM on December 18, 2012 [5 favorites]


Except for when they're eating rotting fish carcasses, I think.
posted by gingerbeer at 9:08 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


And, for completeness, here's a Golden Eagle.

Dude your bike wheel is squeaking. It's getting louder. Weir......AAAAAUGH IT HAS MY NEEEEECK AAAAAAAAAAAA
posted by jimmythefish at 9:09 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


Or rotting human bodies (one of my favorite tidbits from some raptor book I have).
posted by primalux at 9:09 PM on December 18, 2012


don't let me brother see this. he'll never let the Pomeranian outside ever again.
posted by philip-random at 9:09 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's a shame to use up all of your luck in life when you're .8.
posted by codacorolla at 9:09 PM on December 18, 2012 [21 favorites]


The discussion thread on Reddit that I was reading said they apparently use Golden Eagles to hunt wolves in Wisconsin or Minnesota or one of those other godforsaken Yankee states where it snows all the time. (Sorry, Yankees).

My musical choice would've been "Where Eagles Dare."

My first thought, though, was wondering how in the hell I would explain to the wife that my kid was carried off by a golden eagle while I filmed it. Is that one of those occasions where you don't even go home? You just move somewhere far away, send her a note, and start a new life? I think it is.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 9:10 PM on December 18, 2012 [35 favorites]


That bird look little to you?

Well, compared to some...
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:12 PM on December 18, 2012


It looks like the eagle should have nose dived into the ground instead of lifting off. Viral ad for Birdemic II? It just seems off at least compared to the times I've seen the Swainson's hawks that nest in my trees attack and carry off marmots, voles and gophers. This is what I'm greeted with when I go outside in the summer.
posted by the_artificer at 9:13 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Am disappointed the music wasn't 'Love Lifts Us Up Where We Belong'.
posted by pompomtom at 9:13 PM on December 18, 2012 [35 favorites]


If that kid was in fact all right, that's insanely lucky. Being picked up by an eagle usually includes a free side order of being stabbed half a dozen times. I can only think his coat must have protected him.
posted by Mitrovarr at 9:14 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


(Warning: slow motion section features inexplicable music choice.)

Well, I liked it. Golden Eagle hasn't had a hit since "Radar Love", so it's nice to see them getting work.

What? Golden Earring? Oh, never mind.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:17 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


A free-ride to Mordor and the kid turned it down?
Children these days.
No get up and go.
posted by Mezentian at 9:18 PM on December 18, 2012 [14 favorites]


The ending totally changes the way this is interpreted from "Sweet Jesus no!" to "Ha, eagle got pwned."

"I can only think his coat must have protected him."

That's probably why he was dropped. The eagle couldn't get a decent hold.
posted by Kevin Street at 9:20 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


Wow, and we got in at *checks* about 300 views. Where did you find this, flapjax?

Youtube hit counters are delayed.
posted by saber_taylor at 9:21 PM on December 18, 2012


It should've gripped him by the husk.
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:21 PM on December 18, 2012 [18 favorites]


This is going to be great for the "two truths and a lie game" someday.
posted by SpacemanStix at 9:22 PM on December 18, 2012 [11 favorites]


Just imagine the parents pulling out this video when that kid turns eighteen. Embarrassing!
posted by Kevin Street at 9:24 PM on December 18, 2012


can we do that internet wisdom-of-crowdsourcing thing and accurately identify the exact location of where this video was shot in Montreal? I want to point out the danger/excitement zone on a map to a friend of mine who lives there
thx
posted by Bwithh at 9:28 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


(Warning: slow motion section features inexplicable music choice.)

I'm still working on my YouTube remix for this. So far I've got Steve Miller, Jimi Hendrix, and The Trashmen, but I'm open to other suggestions.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:31 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


You know, if that father had been carrying a golden eagle of his own, he would've had nothing to worry about.
posted by gompa at 9:31 PM on December 18, 2012 [204 favorites]


Okay, that's it, I'm raising my child in the basement until he's 15.
posted by daisystomper at 9:33 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


This isn't the first time this has happened. When I was young and living in Colorado, I remember being worried about this.

Here is a nice synopsis of eagles attacking large things like kids and deer.
posted by psycho-alchemy at 9:33 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


can we do that internet wisdom-of-crowdsourcing thing and accurately identify the exact location of where this video was shot in Montreal

Video says Mount Royal.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:34 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


nice try, CG compositor.

It was fake but I LOLed.
posted by charlie don't surf at 9:34 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


What, nothing by The Eagles?
posted by maryr at 9:35 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


The video says Mount Royal Park, in Montreal.
posted by gingerbeer at 9:35 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


You know, if that father had been carrying a golden eagle of his own, he would've had nothing to worry about.
posted by gompa at 11:31 PM on December 18


Okay, shut down the internet, we have a winner.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 9:37 PM on December 18, 2012 [11 favorites]


We're so fitting young Billy with ballast.
posted by arcticseal at 9:38 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's funny how, when you have kids of your own, scary things like this involving a child that would have been just mildly amusing in the past are impossible to watch without a deep emotional reaction.




(that's right, I just about laughed myself sick)
posted by Catch at 9:38 PM on December 18, 2012 [11 favorites]


Before you call this fake...
posted by Scientist at 9:39 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]



hey everyone, let's play Nuclear Eagle
posted by Bwithh at 9:42 PM on December 18, 2012


Man, I get really pissed off when a seagull grabs my sandwich on the beach. This...wow.
posted by xingcat at 9:44 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Long ago, it was actually pretty common for eagles to swoop down and carry off children, but natural selection has remedied that. People worry all the time about childhood obesity, but don't have to worry anymore about eagles. That's nature at work.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:44 PM on December 18, 2012 [5 favorites]


Here is a nice synopsis of eagles attacking large things like kids and deer.

Actually that's a link to a bunch of hooey. Golden eagles weigh 10-12 lbs on overage and the author in your link says "there is nothing inherently improbable in an eagle carrying off a child up to around ten years old".

I've seen eagles catch salmon that they couldn't lift and it pretty much went like the video. They just can't generate the lift to go anywhere with them. I hope the kid's coat protected him from the talons though, because they are nasty.
posted by fshgrl at 9:45 PM on December 18, 2012 [6 favorites]


I always knew I was more animal-oriented than baby-oriented. (Case in point, after watching one of my cats doing something cute this evening, I asked my partner "Why do people ever want kids?")

This post confirmed that for me, once and for all. Because on reading "Golden eagle snatches kid," I was all like "OH NO I HOPE THE BABY GOAT IS OKAY OH MY GOD."

And then after watching the video, I mentally went, "Oh, thank god, it was only a baby."

Thank you, Metafilter. You help me confirm and reinforce what I know deep down inside.
posted by mudpuppie at 9:45 PM on December 18, 2012 [46 favorites]


My money is on the eagle.
eagle takes down deer
posted by badego at 9:51 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


That was a gripping video.
posted by grouse at 9:51 PM on December 18, 2012 [9 favorites]


That was a gripping video.

*clap* ... *clap* ... *clap* ...
posted by Scientist at 9:57 PM on December 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


The mix of horror and hilarity at something that actually happened here is confusing me. I mean, the hilarity can only exist because it turned out okay, but still: despite my cold, shriveled heart, I'm forced to accept that I'm not quite the heartless bitch I thought I was.
posted by smirkette at 10:00 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


Mentioned upthread, and previously.
posted by smcameron at 10:01 PM on December 18, 2012


That was a gripping video.

*clap* ... *clap* ... *clap* ...


No, no, that post by grouse was ornithologicysterical.
posted by twoleftfeet at 10:04 PM on December 18, 2012 [8 favorites]


Ya, that's nightmares for a week.
posted by Mitheral at 10:04 PM on December 18, 2012


I'm torn. I don't want to be a party pooper, but there's something about the video that makes me think it's fake as well. I'm going to weigh in on the "hoax" side and take my lumps if I'm wrong.
posted by lore at 10:05 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


I WILL SHOW YOU THE WORLD
posted by BitterOldPunk at 10:06 PM on December 18, 2012 [17 favorites]


First, they came for the French-Canadian babies, mais je n'ai rien dit parce que je ne suis pas un bebe.
posted by phaedon at 10:08 PM on December 18, 2012 [38 favorites]


Yeah, right, I thought.

This can't possibly be about anything but fresh goats. A clever ruse. There it is, bird in the sky. Caw!

*Bird wheels around, begins murderous plunge* Shit, that bird's not fucking around - this looks like an odd place for goats to be - WOAH. No way. Not on your life. FAAAKE. Well, wait... *Chariots of Fire* JEEEZUSS.

If this isn't proof that we're a part of our environment, I don't know what is.
posted by Chutzler at 10:11 PM on December 18, 2012


Well, I guess it's better than "You have died of dysentery."

More seriously: holy shit!
posted by mosk at 10:14 PM on December 18, 2012


Guns don't kill people. Eagles kill people.
posted by cthuljew at 10:15 PM on December 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


Logical music choice. Like that kid, Vangelis is a lot fatter than expected. He's like Demis Roussos with a CS-80.
posted by w0mbat at 10:23 PM on December 18, 2012


It's not a question of how he grips it.
posted by Big_B at 10:24 PM on December 18, 2012 [9 favorites]


Nobody ever thinks about the eagle's perspective. According to Sam the Eagle, you are all weirdos.
posted by twoleftfeet at 10:24 PM on December 18, 2012


The first comment in that thread is simply fantastic.


This all could have been averted if the baby had its own eagle.

posted by special-k at 10:29 PM on December 18, 2012 [8 favorites]


Eagle tries to take small boy
posted by greenhornet at 10:38 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


If this ever happened to me I'd be all like hold the fuck up, bird. I'm a friend of rtha ok? Now let me go.
posted by special-k at 10:38 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


You are all weirdos!
posted by Brocktoon at 10:39 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


Why does living in the 21st century feel increasingly like living in the prologue to a really bleak sci-fi story?


According to what I remember from most of the bleak science fiction I have read, we are running somewhat behind schedule. I mean, it's almost 2013. We should have all been living in terror of giant mutant eagles at least ten years ago. As many people as there out there attempting to accelerate our descent into nightmarish dystopia, you think we would have achieved it by now.
posted by louche mustachio at 10:41 PM on December 18, 2012


I sort of feel like, I guess I'm happy the kid was okay... But on the other hand, snatching a baby in a populated park in the middle of the city? Kinda wish the eagle had pulled it off because that eagle has balls.
posted by marylynn at 10:43 PM on December 18, 2012


twoleftfeet: " I'm open to other suggestions."

You're missing the obvious choice, I feel.
posted by boo_radley at 10:45 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Next time, bring me the eyes of a child.
posted by The Hamms Bear at 10:48 PM on December 18, 2012


Eagle tries to take small boy
posted by greenhornet at 10:38 PM on 12/18


What is with the editing, jesus, the attack is vicious and then man on horse and then the attack is vicious.
posted by M Edward at 10:49 PM on December 18, 2012


You know, if that father had been carrying a golden eagle of his own, he would've had nothing to worry about.

I don't get it. Help??
posted by AceRock at 10:50 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


It is social commentary re: guns
posted by Sys Rq at 10:54 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


That's it! If this had been a real eagle attack taking place in Montreal, someone would have yelled "tabarnac!"
posted by lore at 10:58 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


OHH. Duh. Thanks.
posted by AceRock at 10:58 PM on December 18, 2012


I don't get it. Help??

It's a gun reference. In this particular joke-form, a parallelism is created between the danger posed by weapons and the danger posed by child-stealing eagles. Advocates of gun control often argue that fewer weapons will lead to greater safety, whereas opponents of gun control counter-argue that the presence of these weapons increases safety, because every armed person would have the ability to counter-attack the threat of someone else's weapon. But much of the subtlety of the humor here rests on our mutual subconscious realization that a random attack, by weaponry or falconry or whatever, cannot ultimately be defended against by carrying similar items at all times, that the very presence of golden eagles around children is in itself its own threat.
posted by twoleftfeet at 10:59 PM on December 18, 2012 [64 favorites]


codacorolla: "It's a shame to use up all of your luck in life when you're .8."

And honestly, you say that, but think of the alternative.
posted by boo_radley at 11:01 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


Thank goodness that eagle has such a gift for comic timing.
posted by Monsieur Caution at 11:01 PM on December 18, 2012


If eagles are outlawed, only outlaws will have eagles. Really makes you think.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 11:03 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Great, now I'm going to have to walk around scanning the sky for eagles at all times and probably get hit by a car.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:04 PM on December 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


Great, now I'm going to have to walk around scanning the sky for eagles at all times and probably get hit by a car.

With... AN EAGLE BEHIND THE WHEEL!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:10 PM on December 18, 2012 [17 favorites]


This reminds me of all those old myths of extinct New Zealand eagles that supposedly would gobble up Maori children and NO ONE one believed them for real,


Until they examined the bones.
posted by alex_skazat at 11:11 PM on December 18, 2012


With... AN EAGLE BEHIND THE WHEEL!

...driving this.

Fucking eagles, man.
posted by jaduncan at 11:12 PM on December 18, 2012


The eagle didn't go bald until he had to raise a child.
posted by twoleftfeet at 11:14 PM on December 18, 2012 [12 favorites]


Frodo? Is that you?

Whoops!
posted by salishsea at 11:17 PM on December 18, 2012


Until they examined the bones.

I am amazed and a little concerned how far I got into that link (roughly the part about how maybe this bird was bioluminescent) before going "oh, Institute for Creation Research. Right."
posted by brennen at 11:17 PM on December 18, 2012 [8 favorites]


I have considered the options and the finest music choice possible for this video is Yakity Sax.
posted by Mezentian at 11:17 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


If I had small children of my own* I'd show them the video and explain that eagles only grab naughty children.

"What's that noise? Is that AN EAGLE?" **looks at sky**

It might need some more work for indoors situations.

*Probably a good thing I don't.
posted by BinaryApe at 11:19 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


I think the fact that when the eagle made contact with the bebe's shoulders my first instinct was to mentally say, "yes, yes! Fly darling, fly!" indicates that me becoming a parent is yet another bad idea....
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 11:20 PM on December 18, 2012


posted by These Birds of a Feather

Eponyisterical?
posted by Mezentian at 11:21 PM on December 18, 2012


"With... AN EAGLE BEHIND THE WHEEL!"

At least the eagle would be insured.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:21 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Eyebrows McGee: "At least the eagle would be insured ."

this is the cruelest twist of all...
posted by boo_radley at 11:24 PM on December 18, 2012


Anyone else here see March of the Penguins? At one point, there's this asshole bird, see, that manages to isolate a tiny penguin chick from its parents, and it's about to eat the chick. And at that moment I wanted to reach through the screen and kill that asshole bird. If I could remember what kind of bird it was, I would totally be that-bird-ist. That kind of cuteness is just off-limits to predation, and if you go there, you're over the line.

So a couple years ago, I had basically exactly that (warning: really pissed off penguin photo) happen right in front of me, except the penguin chick was still in egg form. I was pretty much as surprised and pissed off at that bastard skua as the penguins were, and was equally powerless to do anything. That bird was up and gone in no time flat, leaving only falling shell fragments behind.

On the other hand, skua feeding their young chicks is pretty adorable, but not nearly as adorable as penguin chicks, so the poor penguin egg still wins on the cuteness factor.
posted by zachlipton at 11:27 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


BinaryApe: What's that noise? Is that AN EAGLE?" **looks at sky**

"Fuck, an eagle!!"
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:28 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Maine State Governor: Eagles Don't Pay Taxes
posted by dunkadunc at 11:29 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was rooting against the eagle, because I eat babies myself and I don't need the competition, that's why I shouldn't be a parent.
posted by ericost at 11:29 PM on December 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


It's a miracle this is not what happened to that child. Eagles can attack older children too.
posted by nickyskye at 11:29 PM on December 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


No offence to my actual brother, but I wish an eagle had eaten him, just so I could tell people. "Yeah, I had a brother ..."
posted by neuromodulator at 11:30 PM on December 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


As a member of the plant kingdom, I just have to say that I'm very distraught by the practice of these big birds swooping down on my brothers and eating their little seeds and pooping them out elsewhere, though it does help us travel a bit.
posted by twoleftfeet at 11:32 PM on December 18, 2012


In the spirit of the season, I'll tell the story of the parrot in San Francisco that had been taught to say "Merry Christmas".

One day it was on a perch outside, and an eagle swooped down and grabbed it. As the eagle flew across the city, people looked up, and heard cries of "Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas!"



I know, awful. Originally told by SF columnist Herb Caen. I think I told this one a few years ago, but this seemed an appropriate place to retell it.
posted by eye of newt at 11:32 PM on December 18, 2012 [11 favorites]


I tried to warn people, but nooooooo...

I am pretty sure that we had a pretty comprehensive post here, years ago, about eagles snatching children in myth and folklore and history.
posted by LarryC at 11:34 PM on December 18, 2012 [3 favorites]


This happened to my cousin's yappy little poodle Nipper.
I am sure the eagle thought he was getting a delicious little bunny not a nasty poodle.
I don't know who was more surprised, the eagle or Nipper.
No one liked that dog except my cousin.
He never did see the humor in what happened.
posted by dougzilla at 11:41 PM on December 18, 2012 [4 favorites]


If this thread has taught me nothing else, it is that eagles are basically a bunch of dicks.
posted by NoRelationToLea at 11:53 PM on December 18, 2012


I bet if the eagle is watching this on YouTube now it is SO embarrassed.

It's friends are all like "Dude, you had it IN YOUR HANDS!"
posted by msalt at 12:07 AM on December 19, 2012


This happened to my cousin's yappy little poodle Nipper.
I am sure the eagle thought he was getting a delicious little bunny not a nasty poodle.
I don't know who was more surprised, the eagle or Nipper.
No one liked that dog except my cousin.
He never did see the humor in what happened.


That's close, but not technically a limerick. I think you meant to say:

My cousin had a poodle named Nipper,
An eagle mistook for a kipper,
What he thought was a strudel
was really a poodle.
The eagle was fooled but much hipper.
posted by twoleftfeet at 12:08 AM on December 19, 2012 [51 favorites]


You know, if that father had been carrying a golden eagle of his own, he would've had nothing to worry about.

Bravo. Well done.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 12:09 AM on December 19, 2012


The fact that he was recording the eagle, ostensibly not knowing it was going to attack the kid in an incident he was perfectly positioned to record, raises all sorts of alarms with me.

Not 'this is fake' alarms. 'This is him recording the maiden flight of his robotic attack eagle' alarms.
posted by George_Spiggott at 12:09 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


The eagle drops the kid just as the parent is turning and running towards it. Perhaps the eagle dropped the kid deliberately to get away from the approaching parent? I imagine eagles are pretty good at gripping onto things when they need to, and dropping them when it seems like a better idea?
posted by memebake at 12:23 AM on December 19, 2012


All the eagle needs is a GoPro and this would be VIRAL MARKETING GOLD
posted by chavenet at 12:24 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


A slow-motion, stabilized version of this video makes a pretty convincing case for this being CGI (along with a single frame where part of the eagle's wing disappears, and the convenient editing break when the camera dips towards the ground as the guy runs forward).
posted by EmGeeJay at 12:34 AM on December 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Not 'this is fake' alarms. 'This is him recording the maiden flight of his robotic attack eagle' alarms.

Now let me just stand over here and film my toddler from 100 feet away ...
posted by mrgrimm at 12:39 AM on December 19, 2012


Not denying that this clip could be a fake, but as far as this point:

Now let me just stand over here and film my toddler from 100 feet away ...

I was under the impression that the videographer wasn't the toddler's parent, but was just someone shooting an eagle flying over the park. I'd assumed that the toddler's parent was the person near the toddler.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 12:44 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


A slow-motion, stabilized version yt of this video makes a pretty convincing case for this being CGI (along with a single frame where part of the eagle's wing disappears, and the convenient editing break when the camera dips towards the ground as the guy runs forward).

Yeah, it is clearly an ersatz baby, fired up from the ground using an air ram at an unfortunate passing eagle lured to make a low swoop by a pile of tabbouleh* piled on the ground behind the mock-child and disguised as grass. This fake plastic toddler is swapped for a stunt performer in the final closer shots.

* it is a little known fact** that tabbouleh is the golden eagle's natural preferred prey. Habitat destruction in North America has reduced the natural distribution of tabbouleh to the point that golden eagles have to eat rabbits because the grass in their stomachs closely resembles tabbouleh, and the only tabbouleh sold in North America is farm-raised, primarily in Lebanon where the climate is ideal and there are no golden eagles.

** this may not actually literally be a fact.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 12:46 AM on December 19, 2012 [7 favorites]


All this talk of elaborate digital manipulation reminds me how we used to do it in simpler times, when we had birds attacking children the old way. (via)
posted by twoleftfeet at 12:48 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Eagle tries to take small boy

That's the Golden Eagle Festival, it's held every year in Western Mongolia near a town called Olgii. It's a two day event where Kazakh eagle hunters (Olgii is near the border with Kazakhstan) compete to see who has the best trained eagle, among other things. I recently spent two months kicking around Mongolia and was there for this years event.

There are a couple of different competitions, but they all sort of take the same format. The eagle is up on a big hill and his trainer is mounted below, maybe about a hundred or so meters away. He calls the eagle and is judged by how quickly and gracefully the bird obeys his command. In one of the competitions the eagle has to swoop down and land on his arm while he gallops around. In another, he drags a fox pelt behind his horse and the eagle has fly down and attack it. This kind of thing.

So the hunters call, the eagle takes to the air and starts circling, and it has to spot its trainer and come down and do something. But sometimes what would happen is the eagle would get confused and go after real prey that they spot somewhere else in the area or, as shown in that video, some poor hapless spectator. I didn't see anyone get really hurt (except maybe the eagles), but I am sure it has happened at some point. Such is the price if you want to witness awesome things. There's also a competition which is basically mounted tug of war. Two riders fight over a fox pelt, trying to tear it from each others grasp. Spectators crowd around and shout and try not to get run over. That's pretty cool too and also more fun to bet on.

At the end of the festival they release a wolf pup and the best three hunters from the competition race to try to kill it. It's not really a fair fight because it is just a pup, but I think that might be because nobody wants to risk their eagle for a competition and also because releasing a full grown wolf with so many witless gawking foreigners around would probably be a bad idea. In any case, the pup serves to get the point across. The eagle comes down, grabs the wolf by the scurf of the neck, wrestles it to the ground and then tears its throat out. After the eagle strikes people go ape shit and everyone runs to get a closer look.

I forget where I was going with this. Anyway, eagles. Don't fuck with eagles.
posted by tracert at 12:49 AM on December 19, 2012 [22 favorites]


I am amazed and a little concerned how far I got into that link (roughly the part about how maybe this bird was bioluminescent) before going "oh, Institute for Creation Research. Right."

Yeah, that was a really weird thing to link. The eating children claim is repeated in a few places, including wikipedia, but I can't find any actual science behind it beyond a breathless news article were some researchers say the eagles were strong enough to do it (which isn't evidence that they did). Which is a pity because the Haast Eagle was seriously cool in it's own right.

Example, from here: "H. moorei (10–15 kg; 2–3 m wingspan) was 30%–40% heavier than the largest extant eagle (the harpy eagle, Harpia harpyja), and hunted moa up to 15 times its weight." Fifteen times!

Of all the weird native birds of NZ, extinct and otherwise, the Haast Eagle is always my favourite and modern eagles all seem to pale a little in comparison to me (which is total bias I know!).
posted by shelleycat at 12:54 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


That's the Golden Eagle Festival, it's held every year in Western Mongolia near a town called Olgii.

Thanks for that. I'm thinking of booking a trip next October.
posted by twoleftfeet at 1:03 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Way late in this thread to come up with something funny but damn there's some funny people on here.
posted by PHINC at 1:08 AM on December 19, 2012


This thread has been a good one for me, because I was at loss to come up with decent presents for my children, my two little boys. But this thread made me search the Internet, and I found the Hammacher Schlemmer site, and I've ordered the 9 1/2 Foot Remote Controlled Bald Eagle.

It wasn't on their Christmas list, but I figure that once we unpack the Remote Controlled Bald Eagle and I use it to attack the kids, they won't give a shit about any more presents. So I'm done.
posted by twoleftfeet at 1:24 AM on December 19, 2012 [7 favorites]


Thanks for that. I'm thinking of booking a trip next October.

If you go, don't go on that tour (or, though this just my opinion, on any tour ever). That price is nonsense. Get to UB, hire a jeep and a driver and get out to Olgii by land if you can. The Khongor Guest House is not the nicest, but has good drivers and a great vibe. Ask for Edka. Don't take the bus. Central and Northern Mongolia are absolutely stunning. You can stand outside at night and not hear anything except the wind, not see anything except darkness and the stars. Make sure you go south to the Gobi as well. 10 days with 2 in UB is not really enough time to appreciate anything, you'll need much longer. You'll want much longer. It gets in your bones. Mongolia is not set up for tourism and can be very frustrating, but if you are resourceful and patient and are not picky about western comforts, you'll have an amazing trip.

It's cold in October/November. Gear up, make friends, have adventures. Mongolia is fucking awesome.
posted by tracert at 1:47 AM on December 19, 2012 [16 favorites]


You know, if that father had been carrying a golden eagle Desert Eagle of his own, he would've had nothing to worry about.

FTFY.
posted by zanni at 2:11 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ask for Edka. Don't take the bus.

I might actually do this. I'll say hi to Edka for you.
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:21 AM on December 19, 2012


I've birded this park for years and I've never seen a golden eagle. I'll have to bring a baby next time.
posted by Jode at 2:30 AM on December 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


Yet another reason to chain all babies to the ground.
posted by HuronBob at 2:50 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yet another reason to chain all babies to the ground

chain your babies to the ground
so the birds won't take 'em away
an eagle might snatch 'em up anytime
on an otherwise typical day
sitting in a park in Montreal
or sitting on the dock of the bay
chain your babies to the ground
so the birds won't take 'em away
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:57 AM on December 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Trouble is Brewing
posted by Blasdelb at 2:58 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


"Red items excite golden eagles, as does the sight of blood; they will attack people wearing red" - apparently.

Santa: I suggest you don't wear this particular hat.
posted by rongorongo at 3:09 AM on December 19, 2012


There's a golden eagle that lives along the coastline near their house and flies from tree to tree in about a 4-5 mile radius. I've seen it on occasion, darkening the skies. It's fucking huge. It probably has about an 8-foot wingspan if I had to guess. I've learned to watch the childrens if they're outside. Small dogs, cats, babies are all fair game.

One summer I was chillin' in the Japanese pond garden section of Brooklyn's Botanic Garden. There's a hawk living in the garden, which I've seen before; on this particular day, it was out for a soar, and I noticed a few people watching it wheeling in circles high above the garden. Meanwhile, the pond in the Japanese garden is stocked with koi and turtles.

So I was sitting on a bench at the north end of the pond, just sort of taking in the scene - the crowds of kids on the gazebo across the pond, the breeze, the sun, the lovely day - and hadn't noticed that the hawk had been circling lower and lower. Suddenly the hawk swooped down to the pond and snatched a huge two-foot koi right out of the water. It circled once more, and I watched it soar past the gazebo, all the kids there struck totally silent and wide-eyed as they watched too, and watched it fly off into the pine forest section of the garden and out of sight.

The kids in the gazebo were very, very quiet after that.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:20 AM on December 19, 2012 [11 favorites]


And now, if we could be respectful for a moment... really, please have some respect for our Country, the great Nation that is America, and all the hopes and dreams of our Founding Fathers, because we need to forget this whole child-grabbing thing and enjoy the simple truth that John Ashcroft expressed in his immortal American hymn: Let the Mighty Eagle Soar.

God Bless Fucking America.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:23 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Rapture by raptor captured by aperture.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:31 AM on December 19, 2012 [21 favorites]


Eagle attempts first recorded interspecies atomic wedgie; vows to deliver a swirlie next week.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 3:33 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


A slow-motion, stabilized version of this video makes a pretty convincing case for this being CGI

I'm not seeing it. If anything, it looks more real to me...
posted by Chuckles at 3:37 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Stuff like this will be the norm in the future, only it won't be golden eagles and kids, it'll be autonomous rendition drone quadcopters with a database of illegal non-combatants (terrorist to traffic violation suspects).

Substitute the eagle's eyes and brain for a high def camera and gait analysis and you're done.
posted by guy72277 at 3:48 AM on December 19, 2012


Rescuing him from orcs...I mean humans.
posted by vitabellosi at 3:49 AM on December 19, 2012


The kids in the gazebo were very, very quiet after that.

Yeah. It was gazebo.
You have to be careful.
posted by Mezentian at 3:52 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


A slow-motion, stabilized version of this video makes a pretty convincing case for this being CGI (along with a single frame where part of the eagle's wing disappears, and the convenient editing break when the camera dips towards the ground as the guy runs forward).

I'm not seeing it either. Sure, the shadow suddenly appears but without knowing the topography of the park (not clearly visible when everything is green) its hard to tell whether the shadow just happened to appear over a rise.

As for the wing artifact, it just looks like some artifact. And thats the clip of the eagle flying. Why would they fake that? Thats easy stock footage to get. Unless you're implying someone went to the trouble to imitate the complex mechanics of a bird flying and then then -oops- made a hugely obvious error.
posted by vacapinta at 3:54 AM on December 19, 2012


Really. I think the kids today don't understand the significance of the The Eagle as a Symbol of America, because they get caught up in these YouTube videos of child-snatching.

Often, during my cross-country pilgrimage of spiritual patriotism, when I'm speaking to students about the Great Seal of the United States, they are often confused. "How come there's an Eagle there?" they say. "I thought you said it was a seal." And I have to explain to this new generation of American youth the symbolism of America, and also basic zoology, because these kids are dumb as shit, that the "seal" isn't the aquatic animal they saw on the fucking Discovery Channel, but rather a great emblem of all that is good and right about our great country.

It's an Eagle, a mighty Eagle, and it represents our Country!!

Look closely at the Great Seal of the United States and you will begin to learn a little about what it means to be a True American. There is a mighty Eagle, representing flight, and abundant elevation, and in one talon it grasps 13 arrows, one for each of the 13 original colonies of our great republic, because in the early days that is all we could afford - one arrow per colony - but somehow, through the incredible marksmanship that only divine right and manifest destiny can provide, those 13 arrows were enough to defeat the evil British, with their kingly ways, and begin a process whereby every man is treated in a purely equitable fashion - dare I say "eagleatarian" fashion - but my humorous jest belies the reality of our mutual struggle towards ultimate eaglelibrium (sorry) as the only just form of social government available to us, that I know of. In the other talon of the Eagle there are some branches of olives, which represent the fact that we've conquered all the olive-branch producing nations, and most of the dove-producing nations, so you better not fuck with us. And this too is inscribed in the Great Seal, in Latin, though I'm not sure why, because it's not like there were ever any native Latin speakers here, but nonetheless it says, E Pluribus Unum. I tear up every time I read that, which is particularly annoying because they also put it on the damn coins and there you are, trying to buy some chewing gum and you're just making change and you see the motto and you start to tear up and the guy at the shop says "are you OK? Should I call the police?" and you just have to explain that you love your country so much that you cry every time you see E Pluribus Unum and he says "I don't know what that means" and you realize that he barely speaks English, because he arrived here from some other country, and neither one of us speaks Latin, but that somehow it's all going to work out, because this is a great motherfucking country and we all love Eagles. Except for the child-stealing part.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:55 AM on December 19, 2012 [13 favorites]


HARRY POTTER HAS A LOT TO ANSWER FOR.
posted by MuffinMan at 3:56 AM on December 19, 2012


Hahaha this is awesome and hilarious. Also, I will be having nightmares about it FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE HOLY SHIT.

But I keep watching it and laughing.
posted by Joey Michaels at 4:00 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Here's a better version which stabilizes the bird's approach. It shows just how "off" the (real-life) camera pan is compared to the (simulated) bird's lateral movement.
posted by EmGeeJay at 4:10 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


And this is why babies are rendered motionless by dangling mobiles over their cribs. They're not soothed, they're responding instinctively to the threat of being snatched by a giant bird Spongebob Squarepants.
posted by seanmpuckett at 4:14 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Wait, are we just trying to make Canadians feel bad at this point? Or are you suggesting that, had this been an American eagle, it would have GOTTEN the kid but good?
posted by cthuljew at 4:46 AM on December 19, 2012


obiwanwasabi, how about Aperture Captures Raptor Rapture?
posted by cgc373 at 4:46 AM on December 19, 2012


Here's a better version which stabilizes the bird's approach. It shows just how "off" the (real-life) camera pan is compared to the (simulated) bird's lateral movement.
posted by EmGeeJay at 12:10 PM on December 19


"The motions of the child doesn't [sic] match the motions of its surroundings".

I'll take his word for it, but I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be seeing there. I just see a slow-mo version with a couple of sort-of freeze-frames in there. What is it exactly that reveals it to be fake?
posted by Decani at 4:59 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Looks like we need to expand kids' "be on guard for predators" training.
posted by NailsTheCat at 5:00 AM on December 19, 2012


Did you ever know that you're my hero?
posted by Lemurrhea at 5:00 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


"an eagle took my baby!"
posted by russm at 5:17 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


I came into this thread thinking this would be nothing more than a Zeus/Ganymede parody. How naive I was.
posted by lydhre at 5:21 AM on December 19, 2012


Much of the recent research into bird flight includes studies of joint torques and aero-dynamic forces over time in a forward dynamics simulation. But it's much harder to get funding to study child-capture, so we may lag behind other nations that make that a priority.
posted by twoleftfeet at 5:33 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


To be a pedantic birder -- that's actually a Red-Tail Hawk scream, not an eagle. Bald Eagles chirp like little birds.
posted by gingerbeer at 12:00 AM

Heh. That's actually a redtail call. Gingerbeer will be along in a minute with an eagle call.
posted by rtha at 12:01 AM

YES YES YES I LOVE IT SO MUCH
posted by Greg Nog at 5:43 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


re: Mongolian eagle hunting - there is an awesome photographer, Hamid Sardar, who has a ton of stunning work on the subject, as well as on the Mongolian reindeer nomads; both still photos and film.

full disclosure - dude is a quasi-colleague, sort of
posted by elizardbits at 5:44 AM on December 19, 2012


Yet another example of how the science fiction genre is dying.
posted by aught at 5:45 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


And now I'm late to work because I had to read this whole thing. Luckily my boss will understand when I send him the link.
posted by dawkins_7 at 5:47 AM on December 19, 2012


I'll take his word for it, but I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be seeing there. I just see a slow-mo version with a couple of sort-of freeze-frames in there. What is it exactly that reveals it to be fake?

My gut tells me this is a fake - that such a rare event is captured from start to finish from a near-perfect vantage point seems unlikely. However, I agree that it's hard to see, even in the slowed-down videos, quite what the giveaway is. I can just about see that after the bird releases the child, s/he dangles in the air for just a fraction of a second too long before falling. But it's really, really well done.

This quote from Kenn Kaufman (a famous American naturalist, I am informed) is doing the rounds, but I can't find an authenticated source. It claims 'the bird in the video is not a Golden Eagle, nor anything else that occurs in the wild in North America.'
posted by Busy Old Fool at 5:49 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Yes, it's fake. First hint to me was that it was exactly a minute long. Second was the camera pointing to the ground for so long.. a common trick when you want to hide an edit. But I wasn't sure until the slow-mo version.
posted by starman at 5:49 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've been dive attacked by falcons before (too close to the nest; bad idea). That shit is scary. They are unbelievably adept at turning and diving from unexpected attack vectors. And they dont always give up. Yikes.

But is it wrong for me to imagine this eagle attacking a tea party rally? Because I mean what self respecting right winger would not choose to be martyred by eagle!

Can't wait til Colbert gets this video.
posted by spitbull at 5:56 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I hate the fuckin' eagles, man.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 5:59 AM on December 19, 2012 [5 favorites]


>>can we do that internet wisdom-of-crowdsourcing thing and accurately identify the exact location of where this video was shot in Montreal

>Video says Mount Royal.


Yes, Mount Royal Park near Beaver Lake in the area where the sculptures from the 1964 International Sculpture Symposium are displayed. See photos of the area here.

Here is a map showing the precise location where the videographer was standing.

The one distinctive sculpture seen in the video is L’Ange de Pierre (The Stone Angel) by Hungarian sculptor Pierre Székely. The second, a tall stone near where the eagle picks up the child, is an untitled sculpture by Italian sculptor Sergio Signori.

Just so the eagle-phobic among you can make plans to avoid this precise area.
posted by flug at 6:00 AM on December 19, 2012


the bird in the video is not a Golden Eagle, nor anything else that occurs in the wild in North America

Annoying that he doesn't identify the bird, though.
posted by elizardbits at 6:01 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


If this is a fake what else could be a fake? The moon landing???

The Eagle has landed? What a bunch of bullshit.
posted by twoleftfeet at 6:01 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Also if we are sharing bird encounters I was pooped on by a pigeon once.
posted by elizardbits at 6:01 AM on December 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


Once I was showing a 1940s documentary clip about Inuit hunting to a group of fairly young Inuit teenagers, all of whom had plenty of hunting experience already. There was a scene where the hunter shot a "seal" a dozen yards or so off the beach in the ocean, lassoed it, and hauled it in to shore (common traditional seal hunting method).

The gunshot was followed by a fairly naturalistic distress sound from the seal.

But the kids just started laughing their asses off. And I asked why.

They had recognized a one second dub of audio of a sea lion distress call that had been edited in as the sound of the "seal."

Know your animals.
posted by spitbull at 6:03 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


That's a male. There's a female up in a nearby tree telling him, "You go down there are and get me a toddler. I need a baby."
posted by azpenguin at 6:11 AM on December 19, 2012 [14 favorites]


Ok, I'm convinced its a hoax. Two things convinced me:

1. The quote from Kenn Kaufman

2. This comment on Fark along with the link to an animation school in Montreal that regularly produces these hoaxes.
posted by vacapinta at 6:11 AM on December 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


Hmm. This is true. Here in Quebec, it has not been sunny and we have snow on the ground. So unless this was taken sometime earlier in the season, you have a very good point.

(I don't know why I didn't think of the weather here in re: to this. Dang it.)
posted by Kitteh at 6:20 AM on December 19, 2012


Annoying that he doesn't identify the bird, though.
Computergraphicus canadianensis.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 6:24 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


There's a video now of two people from the Montreal CGI studio - Jean and Martine - who say that they prepared the eagle thing, and admit that it was a hoax.

I'd link to it, but other sources indicate that Jean and Martine are CGI creations, not real human beings, and their confession is a hoax.
posted by twoleftfeet at 6:27 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Looks like a buzzard to me (which still means a hundred subspecies to choose from). Golden Eagles don't have the white banding on the wings.
posted by spitbull at 6:31 AM on December 19, 2012


I've been flip-flopping on fake versus real. Is it possible that an eagle could try for a small child? Unlikely, but possible, sure. I also thought the dangling child looked fake, then shrugged and told myself that real things can look fake.

But what I just noticed is that when the camera guy runs up to the child, you can see the child and hear some whimpering. With the kid's facial expression, it could be real or dubbed. The child doesn't start full-out crying until after the camera pans away.

So you don't see the dad picking up the kid after the eagle drops him -- hey! His kid was just snatched by an eagle! Wouldn't any parent pick that kid up and hug him to reassure both of them that everything was OK? What parent would just leave their kid sitting on the ground at arms' length?
posted by maudlin at 6:38 AM on December 19, 2012


All you Zionist communist IllumiNazis can try to convince us that this video is fake, but I know in my heart that this video is True Evidence of The Eagle. (Notice how "Eagle" is nearly identical to "Evil") Our children is at risk, and you environmentofeminists want to destroy America with your claims that we're all "safe" and that there are no child-snatching giant birds, just like there are no FEMA concentration camp or how it was actually a missile that hit the Pentagon and not a UFO-guided meteor LIKE WE ALL KNOW IT WAS.

KEEP DELUDING YOURSELF, SHEEPLE, AND YOU TOO WILL BE CARRIED OFF BY AN EAGLE. GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!!
posted by cthuljew at 6:47 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Early morning raptor pedantry: Goldens do have white patches on the wings that can be visible from the dorsal side. More golden pix/ID info.

Though, having watched the video starman linked, I'm more hmmmm about the white trailing edge on the outer primaries, which is, well, atypical for goldens, though the white "window" on the primaries can stretch quite a way down the feathers. And the wing length and width look wrong to me (too long, too narrow).

Buzzards. We don't have them in the New World, although colloquially we call vultures (turkey, black) buzzards in some places. Turkey vultures only eat carrion - their talons aren't strong enough to carry off anything like a toddler. Black vultures mostly eat carrion, though they will hunt small live prey, including lambs and kids (the goat kind), though they attack those in groups.
posted by rtha at 6:47 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Definitely fake - call is wrong, wing shape looks long and narrow to be an eagle, coloration of the wings looked off to me, toddler's movement's look doll-like. Etc. I also thought the close-up of the kid at the end was a smaller kid than shown earlier.
posted by leslies at 6:57 AM on December 19, 2012


Over the summer I was out hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains with my 24-pound dog. A barred owl followed us for about half a mile, swooping from tree to tree and always keeping us in sight. At first I feared the owl was going to make a move on the pup but I eventually worked out that he (she?) was hoping we'd flush out some tasty squirrels, chipmunks or rabbits. It's unnerving to be stalked from above. Feels like an inversion of the food chain in a way that ground-based predators don't.
posted by workerant at 6:57 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


I told you. I told you I told you I told you.
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 6:57 AM on December 19, 2012


I know a fellow named Nick who used to manage a small collection of cabins up in the Rockies in Banff National Park (on the Icefields Parkway, if anyone knows the area). He was the only staff there. Next door was a campground for RVs, which was entirely automated -- no staff at all (I gather you drove up in your Winnebago, swiped a credit card through, and got an electrical hookup etc. for 24 hours). Apart from these two places side-by-side on the edge of the two-lane highway, nothing but trees and rocks for many miles on all directions.

Because the RV place had no staff and Nick was there all the time, by oral tradition among the RV crowd, they knew there was someone next door they could go talk to if they needed something. By and large Nick was a source of directions, but in the event of some sort of crisis, people went looking for Nick as well; he would do what he could to help out.

At one point, a retired couple were there with their vehicle and were sitting out front one evening with their yappy little dog running around. As they read their newspaper or whatever it was they were doing, a hawk swooped down, yanked the little dog off the ground, and zoomed off. The horrorstruck couple watched little Muffin or Mittens or Spats vanish into the distance, becoming a little dot in the sky, and rushed over to find Nick, imploring his help.

Nick expressed his sympathy but said he wasn't sure what he could do. They said they wanted to retrieve their dog; Nick replied evenly he didn't actually know where the hawk lived (and, I gather, refrained form stating the obvious -- that the dog was probably playing a novel new role in the food chain by now). They demanded that he "call someone." Accordingly, Nick pulled out the four-dollar-a-minute satellite phone and called the park offices. They dispatched a park ranger.

When the ranger arrived, he talked to the couple and was unsympathetic to their plight. As Nick told me, after hearing their story, the ranger said, "I am tempted to fine you not only for having a dog off leash inside the national park, but also to fine you again for feeding the wildlife."
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:58 AM on December 19, 2012 [16 favorites]


It's unnerving to be stalked from above. Feels like an inversion of the food chain in a way that ground-based predators don't.

The aforementioned Nick also pointed out the mated ravens who lived nearby and mentioned that if ravens get hungry, they will head off in search of a deer or big-horned sheep or something. Once they have found one, they will begin spiralling outward in ever-widening loops until they find some wolves. They will then swoop down and annoy the wolves (screeching and batting at their snouts) to irritate the wolves to the point that they pursue the ravens, who will then fly low, keeping just ahead of the wolves. The ravens then lead the wolves back to the deer or sheep they found earlier, then settle into the trees and wait for the leftovers.

Birds is crafty.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:03 AM on December 19, 2012 [21 favorites]


This story was on CBC news this morning and they interviewed Dr. David Bird (what a great name for a Professor of Wildlife Biology) and he said that this was definitely a fake (also, the bird in the video is an Osprey, not commonly found in Montreal). The interview and some comments can be had at the CBC Daybreak Montreal Facebook page.

And here is a link to CBS News describing the hoax.
posted by Vindaloo at 7:03 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


The light-colored neck sure makes it look like the juvenile imperial eagle others have been suggesting. Which, since they're not native to the new world, would imply either a falconer's bird completely out of control, a staged event, or rotoscoping. Given the apparent composition error and the difficult-to-explain motion of the child immediately after being dropped, I really think the later is most likely.
posted by CHoldredge at 7:03 AM on December 19, 2012


David Bird has an excellent name but boy is that not an osprey. I'm totally willing to believe it's a falconer's bird, and that it's a non-North American eagle of some kind, but it ain't no osprey.
posted by rtha at 7:16 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Also, I would like to point out that this is the kind of thing that fuels our "culture of fear", especially the glorification of this video and the OMG reactions to it. And it is this culture of fear that leads to everyone wanting to protect themselves from everything and going out and buying an arsenal of weapons. This is a great "fake out" video, nothing more; but almost everyone wants to believe its real, why? What is it about these kinds of videos that make us stop using reason and analysis, and instead just follow our gut reactions (and then defend them)?
posted by Vindaloo at 7:17 AM on December 19, 2012


Maybe the baby had just cast the One Ring into the fires of Mt Doom? Why does everyone assume the worst?
posted by blue_beetle at 7:18 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


"David Bird has an excellent name but boy is that not an osprey. I'm totally willing to believe it's a falconer's bird, and that it's a non-North American eagle of some kind, but it ain't no osprey. posted by rtha at 7:16 AM on December 19"

Honestly I have no idea if it is an osprey or not, but Dr. Bird is a raptor expert and he leads several raptor conservation efforts in Canada, so his opinion has weight and credibility. Also, I have seen a few posts by others on the interwebs that agree with him *shrug*.

In any case, no matter what kind of bird it was, the video is definitely a fake.
posted by Vindaloo at 7:26 AM on December 19, 2012


As always, I quite enjoy the Jack Aubrey school of thought re: birds, namely "but can it be et?"
posted by elizardbits at 7:31 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Huge carnivorous birds were a serious threat to our hominid ancestors.
posted by Mister_A at 7:35 AM on December 19, 2012


Ospreys have white chests and bellies, the wings have a white leading edge on the ventral side, and are smaller (wingspan is about a foot less) than a golden. Sub-adult golden eagles and balds both have "masks" like ospreys.

/not the first time I've disagreed with a raptor expert, and likely won't be the last
posted by rtha at 7:41 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Wouldn't any parent pick that kid up and hug him to reassure both of them that everything was OK? What parent would just leave their kid sitting on the ground at arms' length?

Have you met the parents of YouTube?
posted by kimberussell at 7:48 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


That's a male. There's a female up in a nearby tree telling him, "You go down there are and get me a toddler. I need a baby."

Well now all I can think about is an all-eagle version of Raising Arizona and let me tell you, it is kind of the best thing.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:55 AM on December 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Have you met the parents of YouTube?

First sign of total fakeage - dude conveniently held on to the camera the entire time.
posted by elizardbits at 7:59 AM on December 19, 2012


Even bigger versions of these things were terrorizing New Zealand up until 500 years ago. Damn.
posted by whimsicalnymph at 8:02 AM on December 19, 2012


Yeah, that's no osprey. CGI or otherwise.
posted by gingerbeer at 8:17 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


These Cyriak videos get weirder and weirder.
posted by griphus at 8:18 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I look forward to this event being recreated in many 20something Russian staged-action wedding photos next year.
posted by elizardbits at 8:19 AM on December 19, 2012


NY TIMES REPORTS EAGLE CHILD SNATCHING....on December 22nd, 1889.
posted by whimsicalnymph at 8:22 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


really? I wake up this morning since looking at this post when it was first posted last night - and Eagle snatches Kid YouTube Trutherism is a Thing now?
posted by Bwithh at 8:25 AM on December 19, 2012


This is a great "fake out" video, nothing more; but almost everyone wants to believe its real, why? What is it about these kinds of videos that make us stop using reason and analysis, and instead just follow our gut reactions (and then defend them)?

That's making a pretty large assumption that it's fake.

In my head, I agree there's something about it that seems off, but, to my eyes, I see a very convincing video recording of an eagle lifting a child off the ground, and then, as it struggles to lift the weight, dropping him/her and flying off.

That's what my eyes (and most others' I think) see in that video.

Let me -╯□)╯︵-┻━┻ on you, madam/sir: what is it about "this kind of video" that makes so many people doubt their own perceptions?

Wouldn't any parent pick that kid up and hug him to reassure both of them that everything was OK? What parent would just leave their kid sitting on the ground at arms' length?

What makes it most clearly FAKE for me is the kid's reaction, and I'm surprised more parents haven't commented about it.

My kids are not freakouts, and either of them, at that age (1-2?) would have been freaking out if a FUCKING EAGLE PICKED THEM 5-6 FEET OFF THE GROUND then dropped them.

The kid hits the ground at 0:16; the videographer is already running when he hits, but it's 11-12 seconds until he reaches the kid and gets him in frame. Look at that kid. Did he just get dropped 5-6 feet onto the hard ground? Sure, he could be in "shock" but then the crying starts immediately after he goes out of frame.

Also, yeah, 11-12 seconds later, the one-year-old is still sitting on the ground? Any parent picks up that kid (or are Montreal parents notoriously tough?; "walk it off, kid, you're fine ...")

The coincidence of catching all the action perfectly plus the reaction of the child (I mean ... talons!) add up to fake for me, but again, why do people want do believe it's real?

Do you mean why do people want to believe their own eyes? You tell me.
posted by mrgrimm at 8:25 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


First off, you have to drop babies from a height in order to crack their thick outer shells, or you will never get to the delicious tender insides. This is, of course, assuming you are a non-tool using species.

Also, I can't wait until Captain Disillusion get his gloved hands on it.
posted by Samizdata at 8:39 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


That's what my eyes (and most others' I think) see in that video.

Let me -╯□)╯︵-┻━┻ on you...


WHAT EYES
posted by griphus at 8:42 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


after watching the video, I mentally went, "Oh, thank god, it was only a baby."

As a parent of two young kids, with one that must be about the same age or a little younger, this video didn't scare me at all. I'm more scared about getting killed by a car while on a walk or bike ride with my kids. So, no nightmare fuel for me. (I mean, even the low probably of dog mauling or lightning strike is certainly much higher than eagle abduction, right?)

However, I do know how you baby haters feel. I felt sympathy for the kid here cuz (if the video is true) that's a heck of a trauma, and having survived similar trauma recently, I can attest it hurts (I'm a little sensitive to slapstick humor involving hard falls.) I can also attest that serious physical trauma like that for a young baby can really affect their development--my first daughter took a hard fall at 9 mo. that (I think) changed her path quite a bit.

...

But if it was a Pomeranian or Pug or other little (or big) dog that got lifted up and over the trees, I'd be laughing my ass off. We all got our hates. ;)
posted by mrgrimm at 8:43 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


I called it! Favorite accordingly.
posted by Brocktoon at 8:45 AM on December 19, 2012


Pomeranian or Pug or other little (or big) dog

you MONSTER
posted by elizardbits at 8:49 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Somehow this ad for Go Pro cameras failed to mention the brand of camera.
posted by Nelson at 8:53 AM on December 19, 2012


There's lots of other good reasons to think this video is fake, and it certainly seems to be from the wacky physics, but I thought I'd add some of my own, outside of the content of the video itself.

- Day old youtube account, only one video posted

- Very sparse details in description

- No activity from the account's controller

Typically when somebody uploads a video that suddenly gets massive attention, and even news coverage, the uploader goes crazy with details (I used this camera, these settings, this was shot on this day, I usually film birds out in this area, this guy said it wasn't the first time the eagle had attempted to abduct the child and they had in fact been "doing battle" since the infant had joined a gang "at war" as it were with the eagle's crew "ciel d'or") because they've just received more attention than they have in their lives. In contrast to this, hoax videos almost always try to provide very few details and context, as these are typically points at which they can fall apart.
posted by Algebra at 8:56 AM on December 19, 2012 [9 favorites]


I love how the dad just sorta jogs over to where the eagle is abducting his child, like he's retrieving an errant frisbee. (It's more noticeable in the slow-mo fake-proving video.)
posted by orme at 8:56 AM on December 19, 2012


mrgrimm, you will enjoy the story (scroll down to the post from ZippyTheChimp) of the falconer's Harris Hawk that was used (briefly) for pigeon control in Bryant Park....until it carried off a small dog. (The dog was released and was not badly injured.)

elizardbits, don't read the link.
posted by rtha at 8:56 AM on December 19, 2012


D:
posted by elizardbits at 8:59 AM on December 19, 2012


Also, as a very amateur ornithologist, I wouldn't have expected a bird of prey to go for offspring as heavy as this when the parent is so near- it would know very well from experience that there might be a struggle generating initial lift and wouldn't risk a deadly charge by the guardian. Am I wrong to have expected that? Can anybody with some more experience comment on the intuition?
posted by Algebra at 9:01 AM on December 19, 2012


FUCK

I CANT BELIEVE IT TOOK ME THIS LONG TO THINK OF THE PHRASE "LIKE TAKING BABY FROM A CANDADIEN"
posted by Greg Nog at 9:07 AM on December 19, 2012 [14 favorites]


I always ask people I meet which they think will destroy humanity: ants, squid or crows.

I initially read this as "ants, squid or cows". I'm rooting for the cows.

But, of course, that was all settled by the Peace of Hummus...
posted by steambadger at 9:08 AM on December 19, 2012


Also, as a very amateur ornithologist, I wouldn't have expected a bird of prey to go for offspring as heavy as this when the parent is so near

If they're really focused on the prey, they're not going care. I was on a birding walk one day in Golden Gate Park with a dozen or so other people when a redtail swooped down within a couple of feet of our group and pounced on a gopher. We all stood, silently, gaping, as the redtail mantled over the gopher and glared at us. We backed away slowly, not wanting to make it think we were at all interested in stealing its gopher.
posted by rtha at 9:12 AM on December 19, 2012


Lots of bird experts have said that its not this type of bird or that type of bird.

But nobody has said what type of bird they think it is. Or have come out and said that there is no bird like that - i.e. its fake.
posted by vacapinta at 9:19 AM on December 19, 2012


we don't even know what kind of baby it is.
posted by The Whelk at 9:22 AM on December 19, 2012 [14 favorites]


mrgrimm, you will enjoy the story

I only like the conceit in theory (and hopefully one day on video). If I have to start thinking about any dog as a specific organism, it takes all the fun out of it. Individual dogs are fine. I love some dogs. I simply hate dogs in general (pooping, slobbering, destructive behavior, shameless obsequiousness) and think there are way too many. If I have to think about distress to the animal or owner, well, that's no fun.

I love how the dad just sorta jogs over to where the eagle

I mentioned that earlier and was corrected (rightly) that the videographer is not the dad. The guy he talks to is.

But Algebra's points about the videographer are notable. If this dude is filming birds in the park ... he doesn't already have a YouTube account and/or other videos on said account? Would he/she not be enjoying the attention and claiming credit. All very circumstantial evidence, but red flags to me. Maybe I'm cynical, but if it were real, the person who filmed it would be on TV by now, and we'd know who the father and kid are.
posted by mrgrimm at 9:24 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


If they're really focused on the prey, they're not going care.

Literally just this morning I saw a red-tailed hawk in Brooklyn flapping along, about a foot above the ground, with a big-ass pigeon corpse in its talons. It stopped for a rest, and I walked up to it, standing about ten feet away. I said, "HI!" and it gave me this look like "Who the FUCK are you."

Then it got itself airborne again, and it flapped away, bent flotsam of pigeon swinging beneath its claws.
posted by Greg Nog at 9:25 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Maybe it's an inside-the-Matrix view of someone playing George Plimpton's Video Falconry.
posted by The Deej at 9:29 AM on December 19, 2012


bent flotsam of pigeon swinging beneath its claws

Best sock puppet name EVER.
posted by maudlin at 9:30 AM on December 19, 2012


Scientist: Wow, and we got in at *checks* about 300 views. Where did you find this, flapjax?
Why do YouTube videos get stuck at 301 views?, Lauren Rae Orsini, The Daily Dot, 25 June 2012
posted by ob1quixote at 9:31 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


rtha, wtr to your skepticism about Dr. Bird's judgement on the matter, here is a link to a BBC piece covering a similar incident in Florida in 2001 involving a golden eagle which was photographed.

Last night after getting curious about this I was trivially able to find many, many reports of similar events, some of which have been linked upthread. Most are very old news reports. However all together they flipped my orientation from "it's a fake" to "hmm".

So far today I have to say I find the debunking to be purely inferential and awfully definitive; maybe there are debunkers saying "this could be fake" but what I have read this morning is entirely either "I can tell because of the pixels" or "No golden eagle has ever or would ever do such a thing."

Now you have my two pence. Spend them wisely.

One interesting thing about the 2001 incident is that the bird was human-habituated, so I think I'm with rtha on accepting the possibility of Dr. Bird's suggestion that the bird has human socialization, if it's not CGI.
posted by mwhybark at 9:32 AM on December 19, 2012


EAGLE TAKES BOY
KNIGHT TAKES EAGLE
CHECKMATE
posted by dhartung at 9:35 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I initially read this as "ants, squid or cows". I'm rooting for the cows.

Nobody thunk it, nobody knew. No one imagined the great cow guru.
posted by maryr at 9:35 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


oh, and the baby is wearing a Keroppi-like hat with obvious and visible giant fake eyes. dunno if that is mentioned upthread. One would think this might reasonably lead the bird to see a non-hominid prey opportunity.

Who will protect us from the fearsome meance of terror eagles and googly-eye baby hats?
posted by mwhybark at 9:37 AM on December 19, 2012


David Bird has an excellent name but boy is that not an osprey. I'm totally willing to believe it's a falconer's bird, and that it's a non-North American eagle of some kind, but it ain't no osprey.

Indeed. Ospreys are white underneath from head to foot; that's Osprey 101. This most definitely ain't that.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:38 AM on December 19, 2012


... if ravens get hungry, they will head off in search of a deer or big-horned sheep or something. Once they have found one, they will begin spiralling outward in ever-widening loops until they find some wolves. They will then swoop down and annoy the wolves (screeching and batting at their snouts) to irritate the wolves to the point that they pursue the ravens, who will then fly low, keeping just ahead of the wolves. The ravens then lead the wolves back to the deer or sheep they found earlier, then settle into the trees and wait for the leftovers.
'
CORVIDS HAVE WEAPONIZED WOLVES TO EAT YOU WITH
posted by emjaybee at 9:40 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


The only thing that makes me think it might be fake is the ridiculous striped shirt the dad is wearing.
posted by bq at 9:54 AM on December 19, 2012


rtha, wtr to your skepticism about Dr. Bird's judgement on the matter, here is a link to a BBC piece covering a similar incident in Florida in 2001 involving a golden eagle which was photographed.

I do not doubt at all that a golden could and has done something like this. My raised eyebrow at Dr. Bird is specifically because of his (alleged) ID of the bird as an osprey. (It doesn't look like an osprey. And osprey don't hunt prey on land. They like fish, though I suppose they might not object to a small duck or gull if one happened to get in the way.)
posted by rtha at 9:55 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Inuit hunters definitely believe birds lead them to large prey (and I've seen what sure looked like that) because the birds eat the entrails left after field dressing the kill. In fact, they have calls to ask the birds which way to go on the tundra. And the jaegers and gulls definitely oblige, swooping low repeatedly as if to say "this way guys, come on."
posted by spitbull at 9:56 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Viral video of baby-snatching eagle declared a fake, Jeff Sonderman, Poynter, 19 December 2012
posted by ob1quixote at 10:11 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


"Jeff Sonderman declared an eagle", me, right now.
posted by jason_steakums at 10:20 AM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


I do not doubt at all that a golden could and has done something like this. My raised eyebrow at Dr. Bird is specifically because of his (alleged) ID of the bird as an osprey.

I think you may have misunderstood my intent; I was backing you up.
posted by mwhybark at 10:21 AM on December 19, 2012


Eagle Picks Up a Kid: Real or Fake? A physicist says no.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 10:24 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


But nobody has said what type of bird they think it is. Or have come out and said that there is no bird like that - i.e. its fake.

FWIW, via a comment on reddit: "The bird in the film is NOT a Golden Eagle, it's an Imperial Eagle, a bird whose closest natural habitat is in southern Europe. The neck easily separates them, the Golden Eagle has a much more dark, gold-colored neck, while the Imperial has this, lighter color."
posted by inigo2 at 10:26 AM on December 19, 2012


This thread is fascinating--like reading a detective novel. Is the video a fake? As someone mentioned, shadows can get hidden behind small hills. And maybe a string got caught in the eagle's talon, causing the kid to lift up briefly before dropping. Comparing the bird to Google images, it sure looks like a Golden Eagle. So why are two bird experts (and others) saying it isn't? What's up with Dr. Bird and ospreys? Or are these bird experts being faked too? And this physicist and his fake shake, where the kid snatching eagle video shake looks more like the author's real shake example than the two known fake ones. And he thinks this eagle can't lift a toddler, when we've all seen the video of an eagle taking goats off the mountain.

Every new link is intriguing precisely because none of them are definitive.

Is nothing on the internets real nowdays?
posted by eye of newt at 10:33 AM on December 19, 2012


Some collected skepticism via The Guardian.
posted by yz at 10:35 AM on December 19, 2012


Eagle Picks Up a Kid: Real or Fake? A physicist says no.

It's neither real nor fake? Goddamn physicists. First it's cats, now eagles...
posted by maryr at 10:40 AM on December 19, 2012 [10 favorites]


Aw shoot, something definitive.
posted by eye of newt at 10:41 AM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Art school confirms it was a fake. Oh well.
posted by modernnomad at 10:43 AM on December 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Eagles Take it To The Limit (one more time).
posted by mule98J at 10:43 AM on December 19, 2012


The most fascinating thing about this was that the arguments asserting that it was a hoax have more holes than the hoax itself! I guess that the lesson is to always film your hoaxes in low-def, because it means that you can't build a tight case for or against fakery.
posted by Llama-Lime at 10:47 AM on December 19, 2012


The same class did this penguin one.
posted by gingerbeer at 10:53 AM on December 19, 2012


The penguin one really looks like CGI on top of a real world image though... not sure why they thought adding fake Japanese commentary to it would enhance its realism. The blurriness of the eagle made it more plausible.
posted by modernnomad at 10:56 AM on December 19, 2012


Individual dogs are fine. I love some dogs. I simply hate dogs in general (pooping, slobbering, destructive behavior, shameless obsequiousness) and think there are way too many.

I... I thought I was the only one. For all these years...

*cries*
posted by Aquaman at 10:58 AM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


The same class did this penguin one.

I really want to see a video of a penguin swooping down and taking a small child.

DO YOU HEAR ME CANADIANS??????
posted by The Deej at 11:11 AM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


I simply hate dogs in general (pooping, slobbering, destructive behavior, shameless obsequiousness) and think there are way too many.

Amusingly enough I feel exactly the same way about humans for all the same reasons.
posted by elizardbits at 11:15 AM on December 19, 2012 [10 favorites]


NBC News: That kid-snatching eagle video? Fake!
posted by ericb at 11:33 AM on December 19, 2012


Montreal is indeed a hub for gaming SFX.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:40 AM on December 19, 2012


The only thing that makes me think it might be fake is the ridiculous striped shirt the dad is wearing.

The striped shirt is authentic Montreal, but only if it has a boat collar and is worn with a beret.
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:46 AM on December 19, 2012


well, dang.
posted by mwhybark at 11:52 AM on December 19, 2012


Vindaloo: Also, I would like to point out that this is the kind of thing that fuels our "culture of fear", especially the glorification of this video and the OMG reactions to it. And it is this culture of fear that leads to everyone wanting to protect themselves from everything and going out and buying an arsenal of weapons. This is a great "fake out" video, nothing more; but almost everyone wants to believe its real, why? What is it about these kinds of videos that make us stop using reason and analysis, and instead just follow our gut reactions (and then defend them)?
Nothing new under the sun; nothing at all. Before internet videos there were urban myths that were believed just as fervently, and by just as many people.

From milk snakes biting cow's udders and spoiling the milk (believed at one point), to drug abusers leaving HIV-tipped needle points in change slots, whatever the incredible story: if it hinges on some of our hot-button anxieties, people will feel compelled to believe it.
posted by IAmBroom at 11:58 AM on December 19, 2012


I'm going to disbelieve Montreal from now on. The whole city. Just to be safe.
posted by MrVisible at 12:04 PM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


I WANT TO BELIEVE
posted by jeribus at 12:09 PM on December 19, 2012 [5 favorites]


I would like to point out that this is the kind of thing that fuels our "culture of fear"

The folks who created this awesome hoax work in the games industry and spend their days manufacturing spectacle and fantasy.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:47 PM on December 19, 2012


You know, if that father had been carrying a golden eagle of his own, he would've had nothing to worry about.
posted by gompa at 9:31 PM on December 18


Doesn't matter if it was fake. The important thing is that gompa had the opportunity to make this comment.
posted by fredludd at 12:49 PM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Culture of fear? If you want culture of fear, watch The Birds. Way more scary than a fake eagle not stealing a baby. My aunt still won't go near the beach for fear of seagulls.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 12:50 PM on December 19, 2012


Eagle Picks Up a Kid: Real or Fake? A physicist says no.

Inspector Jacques Clouseau: "There is a time to laugh and a time not to laugh, and this is not one of them."
posted by ricochet biscuit at 12:52 PM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Centre Nad claims credit for creating that simulation.
posted by ignignokt at 12:55 PM on December 19, 2012


"Hey, we made a video of a large predator attacking a tiny child! Come enroll in our school!"
posted by daisystomper at 12:57 PM on December 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


I don't care that it's fake, I just don't care. I'm going to go watch it again right now for chucklez and lolz.
posted by Catch at 1:05 PM on December 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


The summer I was four and my sister had just turned eleven, her boyfriend Don brought her a nestful of "chickenhawk" chicks whose "mother" had been "shot by some kid with a BB gun."

There were five in all, and they were cheeping like crazy. We had a brief family meeting and got permission to try raising them.

The nest was installed in an outside windowbox with totally dry, packed dirt but no plants, and which was below the window right next to the front door; feeding began immediately, and consisted of balls of raw hamburger on flat Diamond brand toothpicks, and balls of white bread on the same toothpicks that were dipped in milk before popping them into the bright pink gaping maws that were so big you could barely see any head below them. I remember thinking that the bread and milk didn't seem like such a great idea, but I don't recall ever giving them any water. Maybe the milk made up for that.

It was just an immense amount of work. I wasn't any good at making uniform balls of hamburger, and my sister couldn't take the really overpowering noise they made for more than about ten minutes, so I did most of the pushing into their maws as she assembled the food. I was in constant fear of choking or poking one of them to death because they were so active it was like a little unending riot as they surged up and back and slammed themselves from side to side in their tiny, revved-up mosh pit. The din was such that right after a feeding session, I couldn't understand speech at normal volume for a time. I don't think any human being who ever lived could have sustained that level of activity as long as those tiny birds did, day after day.

One morning I came out (before dawn) to begin the first feeding, and one of them had been pushed out the narrower end of the oval nest and was lying dead in the dirt. I cried, but that didn't matter, THE BIRDS MUST BE FED.

We got the rest of them to the fledgling stage though, and then came another bout of effort as we had to lift them back into the box after they had jumped to the edge of the box and fluttered down. It was so amazing and wonderful to watch, however, that it didn't feel like work at all; I only wish I had more than the paltry few visual memories of this stage I have managed to retain. Reading this thread, I've wondered whether parent birds pick their chicks up off the ground too, if they happen to be raptors.

After they started flying, they spent their days doing God knows what, but still came back to the box to be fed. We gave them as much as they wanted, but the my parents made us cut down their rations to encourage them to learn to hunt.

Then one day, I was riding my bike across a big, flat gravelly area which I think was a housing development that never got built, heard kind of a weird noise behind me, and ka-bam, one of them hit me pretty hard right on the crown of my head and knocked me forward, flapped it's wings a couple of times and perched there. I was thrilled and kept riding for maybe thirty seconds or so, until sensations of pain begin to penetrate my excitement and I couldn't help shaking my head, gingerly, until it flew off again.

I rode home as fast as I could to tell everybody, and burst in saying "mom!, mom!" only to have her 'eep!', cover her mouth in alarm and point at the streams of blood running down the sides of my head behind my ears and already soaking both shoulders of the blue-striped t-shirt I was wearing. Oh well, from my point of view, it was totally worth it.

The closest I ever saw them come to hunting was looking up at a racket to see that two of them had managed to knock a woodpecker down onto the roof of a nearby apartment building. One of them was standing on the woodpecker, the two hawks were just looking at each other, and as I watched the woodpecker struggled free and flew away, then they flew down to the box to be fed.

Not terribly encouraging, and when the snow started the following winter, I had sleepless nights picturing them out there starving to death. But in late Spring/ early Summer I got up one day and there were two of them perched on the edge of the windowbox peering in at me! I grabbed some raw chicken from the fridge and they ate it, but neither of them would land on my arm like they occasionally used to. Another showed up too, I thought, but my sister thought it was one of the first pair coming by itself.

I last saw one of them on the wooden superstructure behind the huge screen of a local drive-in. I shouted and waved my arm and it flew down, circled around about ten feet over my head a couple of times, then flew back to the screen. We moved out of that neighborhood a few months later.
posted by jamjam at 1:17 PM on December 19, 2012 [29 favorites]


Doesn't matter if it was fake. The important thing is that gompa had the opportunity to make this comment.

Nah, now that I know it's fake, I don't believe in nothing no more. I'm goin' to law school.
posted by gompa at 1:40 PM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Did someone make the unladen swallow joke yet?
posted by Brocktoon at 1:50 PM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Did someone make the unladen swallow joke yet?

Twenty bucks - same as in town!
posted by gompa at 2:21 PM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


i posted a hoax
right here to the blue
i feel like a sucker, a chump
yes i do
but, hey, we had fun,
a few laughs, you'll agree
and you gotta admit
that's some damn good CG
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:15 PM on December 19, 2012 [9 favorites]


Aww, man. Next you'll be telling me that this is a fake, too.
posted by team lowkey at 3:52 PM on December 19, 2012


Damn! Duped again!
Looks like I'm the one who got carried away.
posted by quazichimp at 4:14 PM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


all u haters gonna eat pie when u find out thiz shiznit is fo REAL
posted by item at 4:46 PM on December 19, 2012


FAKE? WELL DAAAAAMN
posted by item at 4:48 PM on December 19, 2012


can we still eat pie?
posted by item at 4:48 PM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


The National Eagle Center responds.

I have been swooped at by a bird of prey. I was biking on a well-used path outside of Madison, Wisconsin, so if I was getting too close to her nest she must have been a very busy bird. Maybe she thought my helmet was a rabbit. To my shame as a birder, I failed to identify her.
posted by hydrophonic at 7:31 PM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


wake up sheeples! this is clearly a false flag operation designed to distract us from the inconsistencies in the "solved" MapleSyrupGate affair
posted by Bwithh at 7:44 PM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I suppose it is time for the obligatory "this is why all people should carry automatic weapons" comment.

"When guns are outlawed, only eagles will eat people that used to have guns, that are now outlawed"
posted by jcworth at 8:47 PM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Homeboy Trouble: " fake plastic toddler "

Thom Yorke kicks himself
posted by arcticseal at 9:49 PM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


So I know that it's mostly jokes here, but true story: a red-tailed hawk swooped down for my two-year old son while I was close enough to panic but too far away to save the day. The hawk, fortunately, changed its mind at the last second. It swept up up and away, and my son never noticed (it came at his back because he was facing the sun, i.e., no shadow to warn the prey). Took a few years off my life, though. I mean, it couldn't've picked him up, but, boy-oh-boy, that would've hurt bad, real bad.
posted by agog at 10:41 PM on December 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


I have been swooped at by a bird of prey.

Tobi (aka kites, or Milvus migrans) are a real hazard at the beach in Japan - they make it almost impossible to eat a picnic unless you take shelter under a tree (the people feeding the tobi in the video are complete idiots).

When I first arrived in Japan I remember walking along the beach eating a sandwich. I raised the sandwich up to my mouth to take a bite, and it disappeared into thin air, grabbed by a tobi. Same thing has happened with sushi, and an ice cream cone.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:28 PM on December 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


And the next day was Sunday again. The tobi ate through one nice green leaf ...
posted by Catch at 11:59 PM on December 19, 2012


how could president o'bama let a "hoxe" like this happen the american people deserve ANSWERS..
posted by threeants at 12:01 AM on December 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


Next you'll be telling me this is fake.

Nice try Canadians, pretty good CGI. If you showed that to me ten years ago I would have said it must be real, there was no way that CGI of that quality would have been achieved by three people on 'affordable' kit.
posted by asok at 2:11 AM on December 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


I have four kids and think this is funny as hell, so don't let your evil instincts put you off procreating.
but then yesterday I told my four year old "here comes Santa Claus with his kidnapping sack.
The rattling is the bones of past victims

posted by bystander at 2:22 AM on December 20, 2012 [4 favorites]


This is a great "fake out" video, nothing more; but almost everyone wants to believe its real, why? What is it about these kinds of videos that make us stop using reason and analysis, and instead just follow our gut reactions (and then defend them)?
I love all the amateur hour forensics. The slowed down video did show some kind of glitch with one frame, but there's no technical reason why that needed to be there. It could be that the animators deliberately added it as a kind of calling card/easter egg, or it could have been a mistake. The only realistic criticisms are those from bird experts who recognized that it wasn't a real bird that actually gets that big (or whatever)

At the end of the day, it is possible to fake things that could have happened. If something is done correctly there isn't really any way to "tell from the pixels" that it's not real.
If you showed that to me ten years ago I would have said it must be real, there was no way that CGI of that quality would have been achieved by three people on 'affordable' kit.
In 2002? Why not? It would just take longer to render, and it's only a few seconds if video. The video is so compressed and artifact filled that a lot of the flaws that might be obvious in a high-res still are obscured. As far as software, I'm not too familiar with what the capabilities of various packages are but 3DS Max was out, Maya was out, blender was out. What is available today that wasn't in 2002 and you would need to make something like this?
posted by delmoi at 4:33 AM on December 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


What is available today that wasn't in 2002 and you would need to make something like this?

MatchMover

Sure you could always argue that this could have been done entirely with cel animation on acetate sheets. It's true.
posted by charlie don't surf at 10:46 AM on December 20, 2012


Eagles demand lighter children
posted by rongorongo at 2:55 AM on December 21, 2012


Scots invented Deep Fried Pizza.
I reckon their raptors started avoiding children some time ago.
posted by Mezentian at 4:24 AM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


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