Falcon attacked! - Page 5 - RC Groups
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Dec 06, 2012, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by cweeks0515
Was park flying my blade SR when outa nowhere here comes Mr. Hawk. There was an amateur photog snapping some pics and he caught this one! No attack but a strafing run!
smart hawk!

catching helis in the air takes a lot of practice: they must be grabbed by the skids while you're inverted and the LIPO unplugged to avoid personal injury....!

actually my little, but very smart bird Kiki [shown in vid link in earlier post] has found out now to ONLY land on one when it is inverted in my hand, the rotors still and the skids available for landing > he's learned that the bottom side is safe.

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Dec 06, 2012, 01:27 PM
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Mike-A's Avatar
Friend I am one of the longest running members of this website and must say I have never seen a photo so beautiful posted here! Thank you!
Dec 06, 2012, 03:39 PM
RCG -Minus Member
microflitedude's Avatar
One word. Immelmanns! A funjet should easily outrun a falcon if you have decent batteries.
Dec 06, 2012, 04:15 PM
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WesternFlyer's Avatar
Fly2bob, great footage of the hawk attack (post # 40). Love how you slow down the speed and freeze frames.
Last edited by WesternFlyer; Dec 06, 2012 at 04:28 PM.
Dec 06, 2012, 05:39 PM
Registered User
Originally Posted by microflitedude
One word. Immelmanns! A funjet should easily outrun a falcon if you have decent batteries.
Basically. Punch the throttle, head vertical, and watch as the bird goes 'aw screw that!'
Dec 06, 2012, 05:51 PM
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Daemon's Avatar
Originally Posted by warhead_71
Then I do a loop or large barrel-roll.. they can't fly inverted
Actually, they can go inverted.
Not my shot, but I've seen this http://www.flickr.com/photos/16835799@N08/6565137561/
They just don't do loops.

Dec 06, 2012, 06:41 PM
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fly2bob's Avatar
Originally Posted by WesternFlyer
Fly2bob, great footage of the hawk attack (post # 40). Love how you slow down the speed and freeze frames.
I didn't take that video, it was someone else's. I just thought it was cool and wanted to share it.
Dec 06, 2012, 06:53 PM
Registered User
Originally Posted by Daemon
Actually, they can go inverted.
Not my shot, but I've seen this http://www.flickr.com/photos/16835799@N08/6565137561/
They just don't do loops.

They go inverted and put their legs up vertically with talons out either to defend from an attack or threat that normally comes from above, or as sign that they are ready to defend from a potential attack ["don't mess with me, I'm ready"]. My bird Kiki [in earlier post] can do a flapping-wing loop perched onto a loose trapeze in which he has to flap to stay in correct position w.r.t. the trapeze .... but no luck yet with free-flying loops. His father, who'd had the same trapeze training, could do consecutive loops in a tethered circling hangglider [shown untethered in photo below], and was once thrown into a loop while [untethered!] slope soaring with one. He hung on and flew it over and around very nicely, but since he hadn't initiated the loop he wasn't too thrilled about it.

There used to be a crow that sloped at Torrey Pines alongside model and fullsize aircraft of various types. Feeling threatened, he went inverted, legs up. He got in the habit of doing this daily and got well-known as the inverted-flying crow!

Dec 06, 2012, 07:14 PM
What goes up, must come down..
ZeroPitch's Avatar
No good hawk stories, but back in the late 80's I was prone to carrying around my first sailplane, a beat-up 1.8M 2ch ARF bought at Hobby Shack, in the back of my car, so I could play "can I actually slope it there?" Didn't always work out, but found some rather interesting flying spots that way :-)

On this particular day, I had to drive near downtown Huntington Beach, and return via PCH and Goldenwest. There was a perfect on-shore blowing, and it made me recall there is a 20'-25' bluff overlooking the beach at that corner. So, I flipped a U-turn, pulled over, strapped the wings on, got my nerves together, and chucked it off the cliff.

Made one pass and thought to myself, "the lift ain't great, but it's flyable! Yes!!!"

Preoccupied with my elated success and zoned in on the plane, I turned back around to make another pass... and... holy crap! More seagulls than I could count were right there, heading straight towards my plane, almost on top of me, and the plane heading straight towards them! I knew this wasn't going to end well.

Instantly reacting, I flipped her around in the tightest turn I could manage, ending up maybe 10-15' in-front of the lead birds, narrowly avoiding a head-on collision.

Calm down a little. Try to fly clean.

At the end of the bluff, I turned WAY out from the cliff, hoping I could keep it in the air long enough to get around the 300 or so obstacles presented by the flock as they flew by me.

To my utter shock, rather than keep going, the lead bird turned-in right behind me! And, the rest of the flock followed, one after the other, until the whole lot of them were flying in formation, with me setting the pace.

We kept this up for about 15 minutes, slope soaring the ridge back and forth, the gulls matching move for move and speed for speed, until I caught up with the tail-end stragglers and the lead bird got tired of the game... finally calling it quits.

I'd say that, and the day I kept my Oly II aloft for 7 hours straight and spec'ing out countless times (with only a forced landing for lunch), were about my most memorable RC experiences ever...

- Jay
Last edited by ZeroPitch; Dec 06, 2012 at 08:50 PM.
Dec 06, 2012, 07:53 PM
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fly2bob's Avatar
Great story Jay.
Dec 06, 2012, 08:41 PM
Gravity's a harsh Mistress....
southernmd_man's Avatar
I lost a PZ Stryker B to an Osprey. It came outta no where, dived and broke the thing in half. I was more worried about the bird than the plane, hoping the prop didn't get it. Now if a see a bird getting close, I cut the motor, and dive to safety as soon as I can.
Dec 06, 2012, 10:06 PM
Registered User
mhills51's Avatar
We almost had a crash between hawk and a Align 600N. The bird had a snake in it's mouth dangling three feet down and the guy flying the 600 didn't even see him. They passed within five feet of each other.
Dec 06, 2012, 11:20 PM
Registered User
JDMJim's Avatar
Better yet, dragonfly's and smaller helo's. We have hawks and falcons that cruise around with us...no attacks yet
Dec 06, 2012, 11:30 PM
352nd FG Association
Moonbeam's Avatar

An Experienced "Bird Attack" Pilot's Guide To A Safe Outcome.

Originally Posted by Louisweb
Hi guys, some funny things happened to share, my friend's Funjet was chased and attacked by Falcon last week, it the end he lost orientation and CRASHED entirely. Not sure why the angry Falcon suddently dive down at full speed and started the attack..................
My question is what should we react and do when being chased and attacked by Falcon/Hawk?
*Anyone love to share your experience?
Thank you.
Forget all the "do-gooder" comments. You can still fly and share the sky with the birds. Ask me how I know..... o.k., I'll just tell you. I've been "engaged" by both hawks and falcons more times than I can count, and the end result was they eventually backed off, no one was injured, no contact, and I finished my flying.

As long as you see the attacker coming, you're golden. Everytime I have an encounter it starts with something moving in my peripheral vision that appears to be headed at my plane. A quick glance will give me an I.D. on what bird it is. Wings out- Hawk, wings folded back- Falcon. One maneuver will either end the engagement or buy time. LOOP!!! Every Hawk that's ever come after my plane(s), immediately disengages when I pull a loop. They seem to realize that no "birds" do loops. Falcons however are either retarded, or they just don't give a damn, they're going to kill your plane one way or another. Unless you do this: let them get in close, and pull a loop (repeat as many times as needed). Hawks generally turn fight and disengage as soon as you loop. Falcons do what's called "boom & zoom", that is they get some distance, then dive in at you with wings back for speed. I had a falcon do 7 attack runs on a Slow Stick. Each time I just pulled a loop as he got in striking distance, and eventually he got tired and left. Falcons have to be "worn down" to get them to leave you alone. Hawks are actually very cool and easy to get along with.

SAFETY/CAUTION NOTE!: If you are flying a pusher prop aircraft, kill throttle and dive, if you can't get a fast loop in time. The prop is on the bird's attack end and will chop him up. Don't let that happen. Respect them, but don't let them bully you. Eventually (like within 2-3 minutes), you both will come to an agreement to share the space.

Again, this method of handling bird attacks has ALWAYS worked for me. I know the hawk or falcon is there, and they've become used to me. We actually leave each other alone. DO NOT try to stir up a fight!!! Don't buzz his nest, and don't ever chase them. That's extremely uncool, and if you ever do it around me, I'll pull out my 9mm and shoot your plane down myself!!

EDIT: Quick additional note. Southernmd_man brings up a point I forgot to mention. "OSPREY ARE MEAN SOBs!!!" If you find youself up against an Osprey, land ASAP!!!! You will NOT, I repeat NOT ware them down!!! They live to fly and fly to live........ Aces High..... (Iron Maiden, come on, join in and sing with me!!).
Dec 07, 2012, 12:16 AM
352nd FG Association
Moonbeam's Avatar

Bird Behavior Observations

Some of the RC plane/ Bird of Prey encounters I've had were pretty cool. You actually learn a little about them and how they react to "new company".

At my brother's place, there was a hawk that made a pass at my Parkzone Micro P-51. I saw him dive in out of my right peripheral, and as he got within 5ft, I looped. This all happened 10 feet from my brother & me, close enough that when he deployed his wings to slow down and abort his attack, we could hear the "whop-whop" of his wings against the air. It was really awesome! He then just flew to the trees at the other side of the field. We still see him every time we go out there, and he just leaves us alone.

The hawk at the middle school I sometimes fly at, always checks out my planes the first, and sometimes 2nd & 3rd visit. Once he's seen a plane of mine a few times, he leaves it alone. If I bring out a new one, he'll come out and circle, maybe even make a pass at it, but I'll loop and he heads back to the trees.

Turkey Vultures are FUN. They won't attack, and in return, I don't chase them either. If you're flying a slow easy floating plane, they'll usually form up and fly with you. I'll take my Slow Stick up and do lazy circles when they're around. They usually fall in line behind me and do the same lazy circles.

There's some kind of small bird (not a sparrow, but about that size), that almost always chase your plane in packs of 8+. They never physically attack, and usually stay at least 5 feet away from your plane. They're nimble and fast, and get out of the way quick when you pass into their flock. They can be entertaining and sometimes annoying, but never threatening. They rarely, to almost never, linger more than 5 minutes. Usualy a full minute and they're gone.

Falcons..... are mean. Osprey.... deadly! If you have an aerobatic type plane you're better off. You can loop, roll, and especially if you pull a violent maneuver like a series of outside snaps, or a lomcevak, they disengage real quick. Maybe they think you're a bird on crack.... I don't know, but they won't be as aggressive after that. Except for the Osprey. Do NOT mess with the Osprey!

Still, the one most important thing to remember is don't taunt them!! Don't chase them, and don't give them a reason or opportunity to strike your plane.

With my Stryker Q, I either go full throttle vertical with some rolls, or dive down to the deck about 4 feet off the ground. They won't follow you.
Last edited by Moonbeam; Dec 07, 2012 at 12:28 AM.

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