Thursday, December 11, 2008

Keep an eye on that Pomeranian

From WXII, Channel 12 in Winston-Salem, comes this story about a small dog being carried off (and then dropped) by a raptor. As usual when the non-specialist media venture off the pavement, some skepticism is called for. For example: "[Veterinarian Mitchell] Spindell says that large birds like this red-shouldered hawk can do a lot of damage in the blink of an eye." Okay, so he just happens to have a red-shouldered hawk handy, which I suppose made the camera crew's day, but the implication that a redshoulder could have carried off even a toy Pomeranian is a bit of a stretch. A redtail, maybe, or a great horned owl (even in the daytime), but a redshoulder?

Reminds me, of course, of one of Gary Larson's best:

HT remchick, my best source for strange news out of North Carolina.

1 comment:

Matt Mullenix said...

I love that cartoon....But I won't admit to seeing to taking part or fleeing from any situation remotely resembling what Larson lampoons in it. ;-)

Having once flown a badly imprinted rehab redshouldered hawk, I can say their potential for inflicting damage is probably underestimated (their vocal chords are DEFINITELY underestimated). But those were unusual circumstances.

I'd agree with you that the vet's choice of media prop was a stretch at best.