The eagles are trained to capture small UAVs, aka “drones” that may pose a danger to aircraft or are being used for nefarious activity. They’re raised in captivity and trained as hatchlings to associate UAVs with food. The French program was adapted from one developed by the Dutch.
Royal eagles, which can hunt prey up to 25kg – the size of a deer – are often used by the programme due to their strength.
In the Netherlands, the use of eagles in police work sparked animal welfare concerns among falconers. When eagles intercept a drone, a pressure of 250kg per square centimetre is exerted on their claws.
Dutch police told the NRC daily newspaper that their eagles have so far not suffered any problems from intercepting small drones, but that larger drones may damage their claws. Eagles in the French programme wear kevlar and leather claw coverings as a protective measure.
[Story here, via here, video here, h/t Nancy H.]
The laugh track is unfortunate as this dealie is funny by itself. I’ve got no idea what they’re saying. [Found here.]
“On an August morning in 1978, French filmmaker Claude Lelouch mounted a gyro-stabilized camera to the bumper of a Ferrari 275 GTB and had a friend, a professional Formula 1 racer, drive at breakneck speed through the heart of Paris early in the morning . The film was limited for technical reasons to 10 minutes; the course was from Porte Dauphine, through the Louvre, to the Basilica of Sacre Coeur.
“No streets were closed, for Lelouch was unable to obtain a permit. The driver completed the course in about 9 minutes, reaching nearly 140 MPH in some stretches. The footage reveals him running real red lights, nearly hitting real pedestrians, and driving the wrong way up real one-way streets.
“Upon showing the film in public for the first time, Lelouch was arrested. He has never revealed the identity of the driver, and the film went underground.”
[Link and description via email. Apparently it’s been around for a while, but. Tip o’ the tarboosh to Dan S.]
This was my introduction to Tom Waits, via the Eagles, and I hated the Eagles from then on. Looky here:
Ahhh. Yeah. The originals are always the best. Like this one: