Golden eagle drops tortoise (viewer discretion advised)

Status
Not open for further replies.

Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
88,165
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
I have to think it was all staged. How on earth did they get some of those camera angles. It was just too pat.
 

GeoTerraTestudo

Active Member
5 Year Member
Joined
May 7, 2011
Messages
3,311
Location (City and/or State)
Broomfield, Colorado
emysemys said:
I have to think it was all staged. How on earth did they get some of those camera angles. It was just too pat.

Well, I agree that some of those camera angles were staged for visual effect, but I think this is a real phenomenon. Gulls drop shellfish, crows drop nuts, and lammergiers drop bones from heights to break them open. I just wanted to show that, sadly, tortoises are yet another hard food item that birds can take advantage of by dropping them while flying.

[video=youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9n4h3iHTyj0[/video]

http://beheco.oxfordjournals.org/content/10/3/220.full
 

Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
88,165
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
Oh, no...I wasn't disputing the fact. It definitely happens. Most meat-eating birds drop smaller tortoises they can handle onto hard surfaces like your cement driveway.
 

GeoTerraTestudo

Active Member
5 Year Member
Joined
May 7, 2011
Messages
3,311
Location (City and/or State)
Broomfield, Colorado
emysemys said:
Oh, no...I wasn't disputing the fact. It definitely happens. Most meat-eating birds drop smaller tortoises they can handle onto hard surfaces like your cement driveway.

Ah, gotcha. Well, there ya go. Yeah, I think they must've used a dummy Hermann tortoise for at least a few of those shots. Maybe that's why it didn't break open from that filmed predation attempt. But if it was real, I find it really amazing that the tortoise survived being dropped from so high, even if only once! :eek:
 

Kapidolo Farms

Well-Known Member
Tortoise Club
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Nov 7, 2012
Messages
5,079
Location (City and/or State)
South of Southern California, but not Mexico
This is a common thing with chelonians and birds of prey.

In RSA when I first got permission to enter a ranch, I would go the highest rocky place and look for the shell bits left behind and how fresh they seemed, as an indicator for tortoise presence. It worked as field strategy pretty well.

One study of Bald Eagle nests in New Jersey found many nests with several species of small aquatic chelonians, while other nests had non. This study was replicated in the Florida Keys.

Lots of species of birds know how to do this, but not all individuals of that species. Sorta a weird selective prey base for the birds. It is likely taught behavior.

And as Marlin Perkins once said, "These scenes, whether actual or depicted..."

Will

Will
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top