While Tokyo metropolitan police is busy training officers to intercept drones with net-equipped drones, Dutch police look to the wild to combat errand drones. In the pursuit to take down irresponsible drones or drones suspected of ill-intentions, Dutch National Police is training eagles to do the job. Well, that’s kind of no brainer, right? Since eagles in the wild have proven to go after drones and they are also to be experts in midair intercepts. Though it is worthy to note that the Dutch law enforcers are not limiting themselves to eagles. Nets, presumably like those used by Tokyo police, is being considered too.
Partnering with Guard From Above, an eagle training outfit based in The Hague, the authority is accessing eagles viability as anti-drone bird. While it may seem like a second nature for eagles to intercept prey in mid-air, we are wary about the safety of the bird. Some drones’ rotors may still be active after been taken and if the bird, by nature, attempt to munch it, may suffer from cuts inflicted by the still active rotors. Similarly, the act of snatching a drone out of the sky poses similar risk to the bird’s legs and talons. However, Guard From Above is well aware of this. The outfit has updated IEEE Spectrum of a study of the impact on the birds’ claws will be carried out by the Dutch Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) on the instruction of the Dutch National Police.
In fact, in the video, it did mention about the possibility of protection system for the birds. At this point, we could almost imagine the future with cyborg eagles, equipped with comms and lightweight armor, serving in the anti-drone squad. We are not sure if animal rights have anything to say about this. But I guess if protection is in place, it shouldn’t be an issue, right? Keep going for the said video to see the magnificent animal in action.