Skip to comments.Warning over crow attacks
Posted on 06/10/2005 8:02:43 AM PDT by Kennesaw
Warning over crow attacks
By Luke David And Katharine Barney, Evening Standard 10 June 2005
Joggers are today being warned about violent crows in London parks after an attack left a man bloodied and needing hospital treatment.
Justin Keay was swooped on by two crows in what experts have called a severe case of "mobbing" - where two or more birds gang up on an assumed predator to keep them away from their young.
Now other runners are being told to stay well away from fledgling crows to avoid further attacks.
Mr Keay today told how he was running his usual route through Battersea Park when the birds swooped on him. The crows clawed his head with their talons and pecked at him furiously.
With blood gushing from his head, he had to fight for several minutes before they would stop attack - reminiscent of the Alfred Hitchcock film The Birds.
Mr Keay, 44, who was attacked at lunchtime on Wednesday, said: "These two massive crows just swooped down on me. I hit them but they wouldn't get off my head.
"They kept on at me and I kept hitting them until I noticed blood was pouring down my neck. My T-shirt was drenched with blood."
Mr Keay was so shaken by his ordeal he went to the park police, who gave him antiseptic wipes and sent him to Chelsea and Westminster hospital for an anti-tetanus injection. "They said it was the first occasion they'd heard of anyone being injured," he said.
The father of two, from Battersea Church Row, said he jogs past the same crows every day.
"They're big and look really menacing," he said. "They have swooped at me before but this was totally different. I had to hit them off me."
Although it is extremely unusual for crows to attack humans, joggers are now being warned to be extra vigilant.
Stephanie Fudge, of the Wetland Centre in Barnes, said Mr Keay was probably close to the bird's fledglings, which may have fallen out of a nearby nest.
"It is quite common at this time of year for fledglings to try to fly," she said. "There was probably one about somewhere nearby which he was not aware of.
"Runners should be extra careful at this time of year. Crows can be aggressive - as these two have shown. If a jogger sees a baby crow they should stay well away."
Joanna Leonard, an interior designer, saw the birds - which she thought were ravens - in the same place an hour after their attack on Mr Keay.
"I thought they were very nasty, sinister things."she said. "Two of them focused in on me as I walked past. I couldn't help thinking of that Hitchcock film."
Mr Keay, a father of two young children, added: "What really worries me is that it could happen again - and it could be a lot worse if the crows attacked children. They could literally have their eyes out."
A spokeswoman for Wandsworth council, which is responsible for the park, said: "We will be talking to bird experts to see if it is a more widespread problem. If it turns out there's any need to alert the public we will do so."
Insert Tippi Hedron joke here.
He needs to jog with a tennis racket next time.
I thought this was another Russel Crowe thread......
(Denny Crane: "Sometimes you can only look for answers from God and failing that... and Fox News".)
Is "rook" considered a slang term?
Is a "rook" a raven rather than crow?
I'm always interested in the differences between Am English and Br English.
heh...you beat me to it.
:) not by much
A shotgun with 4 shot will take care of this problem...oh wait, it's illegal to own this in England. Tough nuts, then.
Life imitating a nursery rhyme
First, Jimmy Carter gets attacked by a Killer Rabbit. Now, Euroweenies get attacked by Vicious Crows. Even small, weak, passive animals have no respect for the Lefties.
A rook is different from a crow (or a raven). A rook looks a lot like a crow, but nests in colonies, rather than singly. Large trees in the UK are often full of a goup of large nests known as a rookery -- interesting sight in the fall (sorry, autumn) when the trees come off the trees. Ravens are bigger birds, about the size of a hawk.
Another post regards an Englishman being bitten by a poisonous spider at the grocery store - birds, spiders - H.G. Wells was right - it's Food of the Gods! They're coming to get us, I'm telling ya!
Heh...birds as a fashion accessory.
That movie scared the crap out of me when I was a kid.
Thanks. I learn so much on FR.
Da Krows is coming!"
Close enough for gov't work.
I wonder if he'll be charged with "animal cruelty"; it is Britain, after all. Fighting back isn't cricket.
Has anyone around here ever seen that horribly campy movie "Frogs"? I tell you, these old animals-are-attacking-us movies were prophecies. : )
Damn, glad my ancestors left England, raking trees must suck. ;-)
Perhaps they should stone the crows.
< /brit slang humor >
I recommend hash brownies... that oughta do it.
She signed my dashboard...
For the record...... My wife was recenyly attacked by a Blue Jay defending her nestlings. The painful episode drew no blood, but it did provoke a kindly woman to issue some bad words.
It may be an international plot by birds. Crows and Blue Jays are closely related.
She wore that same suit, and only that suit, for the entire movie.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.