Feeds

Giant vulture menaces Scottish skies

'A genuine threat to airplanes'

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Pilots over Scotland have been warned to keep a sharp eye out for a Rueppell's Griffon Vulture which is currently awol from a Cumbernauld bird of prey centre and poses "a genuine threat to airplanes".

The missing beast - a seven-year-old female called Gandalf - was flying at World of Wings when she was transported into the blue yonder.

Centre director David Ritchie explained to the BBC: "She was taking part in her daily display and started to soar. She got caught in the wind and just went higher and higher until she disappeared.

"We would warn people not to approach her but to call the police. She has no fear of humans and she could give someone a very severe bite. Her beak is designed to tear flesh apart."

The main threat, however, is to air traffic. Ritchie said: "These birds can soar higher than any other in the world, and have recorded heights of over 36,000 feet. Gandalf is an absolute monster bird with a 10-and-a-half foot wingspan. She poses a genuine threat to airplanes."

A Civil Aviation Authority spokeswoman trembled: "It can be quite serious. All the operators in the area have been notified."

A spokesman for Cumbernauld Airport confirmed the threat, warning: "With a wingspan of 10ft, it could do a lot of damage to a large aircraft. But it's also half the size of some of our small training aircraft and it could take one of them, or even a helicopter, right out."

The Beeb explains that Gandalf has been at World of Wings since 2006, when she was relocated from her home in the Sahel region of central Africa as part of a breeding programme.

There are around 30,000 Rueppell's Griffon Vultures (Gyps rueppelli) in the wild, but their numbers are threatened by "ongoing loss of habitat and other pressures". ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
LOHAN tunes into ultra long range radio
And verily, Vultures shall speak status unto distant receivers
EOS, Lockheed to track space junk from Oz
WA facility gets laser-eyes out of the fog
Volcanic eruption in Iceland triggers CODE RED aviation warning
Lava-spitting Bárðarbunga prompts action from Met Office
NASA to reformat Opportunity rover's memory from 125 million miles away
Interplanetary admins will back up data and get to work
Major cyber attack hits Norwegian oil industry
Statoil, the gas giant behind the Scandie social miracle, targeted
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?