Environmental drone taken out by Bald Eagle in UP

Joanna Estrada
August 14, 2020

The drone had been in flight for seven minutes on its fourth day when King noticed satellite reception had gotten spotty near Escanaba in the Upper Peninsula, the agency said.

Environmental Quality Analyst Hunter King with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, was flying a DJI Phantom 4 Pro drone near Escanaba on July 21.

The drone, operated by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, was mapping shoreline erosion near Escanaba on July 21 to document and help communities cope with high water levels.

King and the couple began searching for the drone along the shoreline but came up empty.

EGLE's drone team is considering what it can do to reduce the possibility of a repeat attack, including possibly using "skins" or other designs on the aircraft to make them look less like seagulls, the agency said.

Several days later, it was pinpointed that the drone was 150 feet offshore Lake Michigan in four feet of water.

The department said the incident could have been territorial attack - or just a hungry, confused eagle.

A state drone coordinator, Authur Ostaszewski, used a kayak and snorkeling gear in his unfruitful search, state officials said.

The $950 drone is obsolete and will be replaced with a newer model, the department said.

Bird strikes aren't unusual for drones.

Technology publication 3D Insider a year ago published a guild for amateur drone operators about how to avoid bird strikes.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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