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Birds Birds and more birds...
516 13 2018-10-11
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Packer Backer
Second Officer
Flight distance : 214088 ft
United States
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I know that there have been other posts on birds and dealing with them but the other day was my first encounter with a gaggle, flock, murder or what ever kind of birds they were...  I was about 200 AGL when I noticed them I elevated up to 300 and there were more there were soo many that I did not think I was going to make it out of there without a collission. I ended up just dropping altitude and then getting the f out of dodge I got about 1500 feet away from where I was and started to take a pano. And boom they were back in less numbers. I just flew back and called it a day. It was to say the least nerve racking.

I googled this and found a few recommendations from going on the agressive to skinning the drone to turning off all positioning sensors.. Anyone got some good pointers on dealing with them?  I flew 2 batteries tonight and did not have the same problem.
2018-10-11
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Montfrooij
Captain
Flight distance : 1859961 ft
Netherlands
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Yes, that is a real issue sometimes.
2018-10-11
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pjollain
Second Officer
Flight distance : 92110 ft
Luxembourg
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I would like to get some advice on the best skin that would avoid this situation. Do you have any information?
2018-10-11
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Bekaru MP UAV
Captain
Flight distance : 14833015 ft
South Africa
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hey packer - from my personal experience i will have thought that both recomendations (skinning and going on aggressive) would not be the best advise, however i may be wrong. There are 2 kinds of bird strikes 1. intentional as with certain birds of prey - if i see them about i clear the hell out of that airspace asap 2. unintentional as seems to be the case with most drone take downs. when a bird unintentionally hits the drone it is almost always one bird that is part of a flock. I get the impression having watched those crashes that the drone is not hit by the first birds because they are able to see the drone and always make avoidance manouvers. The unintentional bid strikes occur when the front birds move to avoid the drone at last moment notice but the poor birds behind them have less reaction time cause they only see the drone too late (when their mate in front pulls out the way) then the guy behind who did not see the drone ends up crashing into it.
2018-10-12
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fans55ae5496
Captain

United States
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simple solution - if birds are about, don't fly.

If you start killing or disturbing birds, birders will put a stop to drones in your area quickly.

Be responsible people, don't give authorities yet more reasons to regulate you out of a hobby.
2018-10-12
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Columbo
Second Officer
Flight distance : 291545 ft
United Kingdom
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Birds will always attempt to "Shoo away" any other aerial interloper(s). You just have to watch birds  intimidating any birds in their area that could be after their eggs/young, it's a natural instinct. I don't think trying to make your UAV less noticeable by "skinning it" will make any difference.

I have had a small flock of pigeons try to intimidate my UAV swooping towards and near it, I was only too happy to get it back home in one piece, Birds of Prey will actually attack a perceived intruder with the outcome likely to be a lost UAV. Whilst I was recently in the Canaries just before I started to fly a bird of prey was immediately above me so I thought long and hard and decided the risk was too high so I lthought best not to fly there.

Of course a bird can and does fly in the wild and we are in their space so there's always a possibility of a bird attacking our UAV's. We just need to be sensible and try (wherever possible) to keep this contact to a minimum, or as has been said bird watchers will be lobbying to try and get our hobby even more regulated, which we really don't want.


2018-10-12
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TrevorSK
Second Officer
Flight distance : 1380486 ft
Canada
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I suspect because of the unusually high numbers, and by the time of year, that these may be migratory birds heading south for winter. If my assumption is right, just stay out of their way for a few more days, and they'll move on. Then you can get the shots you want without the birds disturbing you and you disturbing the birds. As related side note, I watched a football game on TV on Saturday, and the amount of seagulls swarming the network cameras made it very distracting to see the game. Just goes to show, it is what it is, even for big networks. Nothing we can do.
2018-10-12
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BrianKushner
First Officer
Flight distance : 1930115 ft
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United States
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Bekaru MP UAV Posted at 2018-10-12 00:27
hey packer - from my personal experience i will have thought that both recomendations (skinning and going on aggressive) would not be the best advise, however i may be wrong. There are 2 kinds of bird strikes 1. intentional as with certain birds of prey - if i see them about i clear the hell out of that airspace asap 2. unintentional as seems to be the case with most drone take downs. when a bird unintentionally hits the drone it is almost always one bird that is part of a flock. I get the impression having watched those crashes that the drone is not hit by the first birds because they are able to see the drone and always make avoidance manouvers. The unintentional bid strikes occur when the front birds move to avoid the drone at last moment notice but the poor birds behind them have less reaction time cause they only see the drone too late (when their mate in front pulls out the way) then the guy behind who did not see the drone ends up crashing into it.

Check this out. There is a Peregrine Falcon family that lives on top of a Bridge near where I film. Every once in awhile they check me out. This is pulled from a video frame.

2018-10-12
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BrianKushner
First Officer
Flight distance : 1930115 ft
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United States
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Bekaru MP UAV Posted at 2018-10-12 00:27
hey packer - from my personal experience i will have thought that both recomendations (skinning and going on aggressive) would not be the best advise, however i may be wrong. There are 2 kinds of bird strikes 1. intentional as with certain birds of prey - if i see them about i clear the hell out of that airspace asap 2. unintentional as seems to be the case with most drone take downs. when a bird unintentionally hits the drone it is almost always one bird that is part of a flock. I get the impression having watched those crashes that the drone is not hit by the first birds because they are able to see the drone and always make avoidance manouvers. The unintentional bid strikes occur when the front birds move to avoid the drone at last moment notice but the poor birds behind them have less reaction time cause they only see the drone too late (when their mate in front pulls out the way) then the guy behind who did not see the drone ends up crashing into it.

Check this out. There is a Peregrine Falcon family that lives on top of a Bridge near where I film. Every once in awhile they check me out. This is pulled from a video frame.

2018-10-12
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Bekaru MP UAV
Captain
Flight distance : 14833015 ft
South Africa
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BrianKushner Posted at 2018-10-12 10:01
Check this out. There is a Peregrine Falcon family that lives on top of a Bridge near where I film. Every once in awhile they check me out. This is pulled from a video frame.

[view_image]

thats awesome - interesting to see that not all birds of prey actually attack - hope he keeps it that way cause otherwise he will get hurt and that would be very sad.
2018-10-12
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Ali3N
lvl.3
Flight distance : 294514 ft
Colombia
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I'd usually get some big birds to start flying in circles around my drone, when this happens I always just call it a day and land.
2018-10-12
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Gregbella
Captain
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BrianKushner Posted at 2018-10-12 10:01
Check this out. There is a Peregrine Falcon family that lives on top of a Bridge near where I film. Every once in awhile they check me out. This is pulled from a video frame.

[view_image]

That’s a great photo
2018-10-12
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BrianKushner
First Officer
Flight distance : 1930115 ft
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United States
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Bekaru MP UAV Posted at 2018-10-12 11:29
thats awesome - interesting to see that not all birds of prey actually attack - hope he keeps it that way cause otherwise he will get hurt and that would be very sad.

I've been flying for 3 years. Almost every day year round and 99% over water or marsh where there are always birds. I've never been attacked. Checked out a few times but never attacked and never hit a bird. I film on the Delaware River, when Tug boats come through and churn up the water there can be hundreds of birds feeding in the wake and I fly and film and again no instances. They avoid you. A bird of prey will check you out to see if your a threat to their young.
2018-10-13
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DJI Tony
Super Moderator

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Hi, Sorry to know on what happened to our drone. Birds are part of our environment and I'm sure they're not familiar to the drones that's why they react aggressively when they notice it. Hope you'll get the best recommendation on this to prevent this scenario. Thank you for sharing your story here.
2018-10-14
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