Komenda-Zehnder, S. & M. Zehnder
Angriff eines Steinadlers Aquila chrysaetos auf ein Modellsegelflugzeug.
(von 1994 bis 2006 vergeben)
Flugverhalten, Aggression, Kollision
Aquila chrysaetos, Buteo buteo, Rotmilan
Steinadler, Mäusebussard, Milvus milvus
Schweiz, St. Gallen, Toggenburg
Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos attacking a model glider. In more than 20 years of experience with remote-controlled model gliders in a prealpine region in the east of Switzerland (Toggenburg), raptors were often observed circling in the same thermals. The raptors (mainly Red Kite Milvus milvus and Common Buzzard Buteo buteo, rarely Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos) always behaved indifferently towards the aircraft. However, on 3 May 2009 a Golden Eagle attacked a model glider that was already 45 min aloft. The eagle circled about 50–100 m above the aircraft that had reached an altitude of 200 m above ground. All of a sudden, the bird dived and grabbed the aircraft with its claws. After two or three wing beats, the eagle released it. The glider crashed and the raptor rapidly gained height by soaring. In that area, two regularly occupied breeding sites of the Golden Eagle are known, one about 5 km east and the other 5 km north. In May 2009, at least the eyrie 5 km north of the attack was occupied. Therefore, the aggression might have been a territorial defense behaviour.
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