A drone delivery service in Canberra, Australia suspended its service after its devices were attacked by ravens defending their nests. You can check out the video at the end of this article.
The service is a subsidiary of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, called Wing. It delivers a sundry of items to Canberra residents and has been in operation since 2019, but on Tuesday it announced that it was halting deliveries after reports of ravens attacking the drones.
The suspension came as demand was surging because of the ongoing COVID-19 lockdowns.
Ben Roberts, who orders coffee every morning with the service, recorded the attack and posted it online.
Ben told The Canberra Times, “It’s a matter of time before they bring one down. They think it’s Terminator or something.”
Ravens aren’t the only birds attacking drones; magpies, hawks, and eagles have also been spotted trying to take down the flying objects.
The delivery service told local customers, “We’ve identified some birds in the area demonstrating territorial behaviors and swooping at moving objects,” according to reporting from ABC News Australia.
Insider also spoke to Wing and was told that the drone in the video completed the delivery and returned home.
The spokesperson said Wing drones come with “multiple redundancies to help ensure safe operations in the event that something like this occurs.”
According to Wing, the suspension will only impact a “limited number” of customers. Others in Canberra were not affected.
ABC News Australia spoke to ornithologist Neil Hermes. He told them this kind of attack is new, which seems a little obvious since drone delivery is new.
“They will swoop dogs and activity around their nests, but attacking drones is new,” Hermes said.
Wayne Condon, who is a chief pilot and instructor with UAV Training Australia, told ABC News Australia that drone operators should avoid the nests.
“At the end of the day, it’s their sky, and we are the visitor. Fingers crossed, if you act fast enough, you’ll be able to save your aircraft and not injure the bird!” Condon said to The Canberra Times.
Here is the detail video: