Pigeons don’t often inspire demonstrations of concern and care from city dwellers, many of whom tend to revile the ubiquitous scavengers as “rats with wings.” But one of the birds became the object of much attention – and the star of a drone video – when a Peruvian neighborhood went to work to save the pigeon after it had gotten itself into a seemingly hopeless fix.
The video uploaded to the r/drones subreddit by user HumansBeingBros shows police and members of a Barranca, Peru, neighborhood banding together – and deploying a drone – to save a pigeon hanging upside down from what looks to be a telephone line spanning a street. The bird had gotten its leg seriously tangled in one of several lengths of twine wrapped around various parts of the finger-width cable.
After presumably struggling in vain to free itself, the creature quickly appears too tired to do much more than occasionally flap its wings while hanging, head-down, as sympathetic humans look helplessly on. As the footage continues, things seem pretty bleak for one of the least cherished members of the planet’s feathered set. The line is too high to climb to, and the bird’s position over the middle of the street makes lateral access from a building virtually impossible.
That, however, was not counting on the heart and creativity of Barranca’s finest, and the kindness of concerned residents.
Fatigue-clad cops pull out their DJI Mini 2, and carefully wrap a box cutter around it with electrician’s tape. The police officers then pilot the drone towards the pigeon, using the video feed to very carefully approach the section of string between the bird and cable. They then painstakingly navigate the extended blade in an attempt to cut the thread while residents hold a tightened sheet below to catch the pigeon when it drops.
At that precise moment, viewers without expert ability to differentiate various types of municipal utility wiring wind up really hoping the cable is alive with telephone signals, not electrical jolts.
As the video then shows, however, the drone does not explode in a sizzling blast, nor does the pigeon, once freed, drop like a rock into the sheet. Instead the liberated bird spreads its wings and glides to the ground, as onlookers cheer. Eventually, a crew from the neighborhood get hold of the creature and cut the bonds from its legs. It is eventually placed in a cage, where (according to r/drone commentors) it will likely be looked after and cared for until it’s strong enough for release.
A uniquely Reddit blend of admiration, snark, and wonkitude then ensured.
“Tax payer dollars at work,” groused Mhinc.
“Dji mini 2 for the win,” hailed dronegeeks1.
“The mini2 could handle that extra weight?” asked Hankol earnestly. “Not bad, I thought that would be too much. Also props for piloting precise enough for this to work, there are only a few cm difference between the blade and the propellers.
“I was waiting for the feathers,” admitted the clearly moved and sincerely relived Oldgixxerland. “Thank god.”
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