Montreal baby experiences terror of being ‘lifted up by eagle’s wings’ (hoax?)

East Coast son Kenny sent this video, noting his reaction was the same as the guy in the film; an encounter with a golden eagle in a Montreal park:

You can take the eagle out of the wild, but you can’t take the wild out of the eagle.

Looks mostly like a golden eagle to me — anyone want to make the case it’s a different bird?

What’s going on in Montreal, I wonder, that would make a golden eagle think a human baby might make a good meal?  (No, I don’t think the bird was trying to give the kid a thrill.)

Other reports of similar incidents around Montreal?

Update:  WHAT?  IT’S FAKED? Thoughtful reader Luisa in comments refers us to Chris Clarke’s Original Blog™ Coyote Crossing, which updates from expert birder Kenn Kauffman who says, as I wondered, it’s not a golden eagle, and other things look hoaxed. (While you’re looking around, check out Luisa’s Crow and Raven; bird photos that will make you jealous.)  You’d think an incident like that would have made it to the newspapers and television stations in Montreal, but I’ve found nothing — have you?)

Update, December 19, 2012:  Now the CBC covers the tale,  noting that it is most likely a hoax.  The film’s maker or YouTube poster has not defended it that I can find.  Watch carefully — the “baby” doesn’t move during the time it’s on the ground, through the bird’s plucking it up and dropping it.  There’s plenty of time to swap a dummy out with a real kid in the stroller while the camera is pointed away.  CBC found a Montreal ornithologist who claims it looks more like an osprey than an eagle.  I’ll buy that.


7 Responses to Montreal baby experiences terror of being ‘lifted up by eagle’s wings’ (hoax?)

  1. I must agree with Ed Darrell, the young today are not taught to be skeptical of anything they see or hear. As an experimental and clinical psychologist, I can say there are many reasons to be suspect of the quick (and sometimes wrong) judgments made precognitively after initial perceptual impressions. The forebrain (neocortex) developed primarily to inhibit these hastily formed, preservation-based impressions. In most people, those inhibitory connections back to the limbic system, where those impressions–such as to this video–are formed and emoting occurs, work very well They are the basis of the Civil Society as conceived my Montesquieu and all subsequent political “free will” theorists.

    Those connections continue to develop into the 4th decade of life.


  2. The Montreal Gazette image is quite offensive–quite classic “guilt by proximity.” I wonder what is thought of those who collect arrowheads….at one time, crossbows were banned!. Look at the cost of some rare antique firearms–the catalogs of some of these auctions bring astounding prices. Some people can appreciate these different mechanisms the way David Rittenhouse appreciated the movement of the planets in his Orerry housed at one time in the entrance to the library at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. I last saw it in 1976–quite an impression.


  3. Ed Darrell says:

    Fascinating to me that there are nearly 4,000 comments on this video at YouTube — and only a tiny handful indicate any kind of skepticism. Gullibility is a major problem these days.


  4. Ed Darrell says:

    Thank you, Luisa! (That was quick!)

    Post updated. Will there be protests of authenticity?


  5. Luisa says:

    Staged. See update on the Coyote Crossing blog, with quote from Kenn Kaufman. [Yes, that Kenn Kaufman: ]

    On the other hand, a fair amount of stuff like this has been documented:


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