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Alice Springs Desert Park: Eagle tries to carry off Australian boy

The Alice Springs Desert Park

A wedge-tailed eagle tried to fly away with a terrified boy at a popular wildlife show in central Australia.

A crowd of stunned onlookers watched the enormous bird latch its talons onto the screaming boy’s head during a show at Alice Springs Desert Park.

Witnesses said the bird attempted to pick him up “like a small animal”.

The boy – believed to be between six and eight years old – escaped with a “superficial” gash to his face.

Christine O’Connell from Horsham in Victoria state was visiting the park with her husband on 6 July when the attack occurred.

She told the media persons that the eagle flew straight for the boy from about 15m away.

Wedge-tailed eagle attempts to lift boy into the air in Australia

Wedge-tailed eagle attempts to lift boy into the air in Australia. Attack lasted for seconds before staff from the park intervened

“A fellow who was sitting closer said the little boy kept running his zipper up and down,” said Mrs O’Connell, who caught the attack on her camera.

The eagle grabbed the boy’s green hoodie and attempted to him lift away before park staff moved in.

The attack left the boy crying and bleeding, but his injuries were not severe.

A Victorian man who was in the crowd, Keenan Lucas, told the NT News the show was ended quickly after the attack.

“We’re at the bird show in the afternoon, having a great time and looking forward to seeing the wedge-tailed eagle come out for the finale,” he said.

Eagle attacks boy while another boy doubles over with laughter

The boy suffered minor injuries in the attack and was taken for medical treatment

“The bird then flew over the crowd and tried to grab on to a young boy’s head. He screamed, the mother was distraught and the presenters wrapped up the show very quickly.”

The park issued a statement to the media after being contacted about the event.

“On Wednesday, 6 July, an incident occurred at the Alice Springs Desert Park where an eagle made contact with an audience member,” the park said in a statement.

“A thorough investigation regarding the circumstances behind this incident is under way and the eagle will be removed from the show while this investigation is ongoing.”


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About the author

Sydney Chesterfield

Poet, Playwright, Philosopher, Humanitarian, mad lover of children and unflinching fighter for equality on all grounds viz. Women's rights, child rights, sine die.

Twitter: @syd_field