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Activists' Drone Shot Out of the Sky For Fourth Time 733

Posted by samzenpus
from the and-stay-down dept.
garymortimer writes "Photos provided by the animal rights group show the multicopter smoking on the ground, with its lithium polymer battery supply smoldering. Another photo shows the drone's video camera smashed. The drone, dubbed 'Angel,' was a Cinestar 8 octocopter estimated at $4,000. This wasn't the first time SHARK has been shot out of the sky. This is the fourth drone that the group has lost while investigating pigeon shootings. One drone landed on club property, and is the subject of an ongoing lawsuit."
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Activists' Drone Shot Out of the Sky For Fourth Time

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  • by nurb432 (527695) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:22PM (#42032495) Homepage Journal

    If you fly a drone over my land, ill shoot it down too. Its an invasion of my privacy and borderline trespassing.

  • by cfulton (543949) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:33PM (#42032649)
    I love animals too. But, pigeon shootings? The town council in most small towns would buy the shells if you would kill the pigeons that flock to the town square. Sorry about their little toy helicopter, but you get what you deserve.
  • by green1 (322787) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:34PM (#42032667)

    I think it's obvious that a 747 flying at 30,000 ft isn't trespassing... but it also seems obvious that somone on a hovercreaft skimming along a couple inches above the ground is. A drone weaving through your trees "feels" like tresspassing, but maybe one a couple hundred feet up wouldn't be?

    It does bring up an interesting question about where the distinction lies, what altitude is considered "public" vs "private"?

    Of course if the drone is camera equipped (almost guaranteed) you may be able to skip tresspassing rules and use peeping tom type laws against it at almost any altitude if it's filming parts of your property that would otherwise be private...

  • Re:hunting? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by History's Coming To (1059484) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:49PM (#42032893) Journal
    Wild pigeons? As in ones that live on insects and seeds and the like? Hell yeah, it's like extra-gamey pheasant, quite a livery taste, very nice indeed. If you want to eat a little more efficiently then go for something bigger like goose, but pigeon is very nice indeed. I wouldn't recommend the city variety though, never tasted it but I'm sure it's not as good for you...
  • Re:hunting? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by timothyf (615594) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:52PM (#42032941) Homepage

    They're not eating them. From TFA:

    The Philadelphia Enquirer reported that SHARK lobbied the Pennsylvania statehouse in January, seeking legislation that would end pigeon shooting in the state. These hunting events involve capturing or breeding pigeons in cages, and releasing a large number of birds from cages to immediately be shot or wounded by hunters.

    Pigeon shooting opponents contend that these events violate animal cruelty laws, and SHARK has used aerial footage obtained from drones to strengthen that argument.

    “the predictable outrage generated by gruesome videos showing captive pigeons getting released from wooden crates, attempting to fly away, only to get blasted within seconds by a shooter who’s apparently only a few yards away, reinforces both the ethical stance and the financial status of animal activists who want to ban not just canned hunting but much of animal agriculture,” read an editorial in the Drovers CattleNetwork, a beef industry news periodical.

    Honestly, I'm not a fan of the practice on practical grounds (what if the pigeon gets away? you're adding to the pest pigeon population, since these are bred, not captured), but I'd say that if it's private property, drones like this deserve to be shot down.

  • by davidwr (791652) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:52PM (#42032957) Homepage Journal

    What are the FAA and other rules, if any, regarding model airplanes and other unmanned flying machines?

  • by msauve (701917) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:52PM (#42032961)
    "a property owner/renter "owns" the airspace up to about 500-ft (150m)."

    Which is about the maximum range of a shotgun.
  • Skill (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 19, 2012 @07:39PM (#42033577)

    Lost in the discussion of legality and ethics is a simple question: what kind of pussy needs pigeons released from a box at short range to score a kill? Why not just shoot them in the box and call yourself an accomplished sportsman?

  • by Albanach (527650) on Monday November 19, 2012 @07:44PM (#42033653) Homepage

    I'm not a lawyer.

    In Florida v. Riley, the US Supreme Court found it was permissible for a police officer to observe inside a greenhouse through the open roof from a helicopter circling the property at 400ft.

    The court said that helicopters are not bound by the lower limits of the navigable airspace allowed to other aircraft and that any member of the public could legally have been flying over the property at that time.

    I think a lot of weight was given to the fact it was lawful in the jurisdiction for the officer (or anyone else) to be there (circling at 400ft). So your expectation of what you can consider to be private seems to be, at least in part, based on local or federal aviation laws.

    If you want to grow marijuana in a greenhouse outside your home, you should probable consult a lawyer first.

  • by Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) on Monday November 19, 2012 @09:37PM (#42034957) Journal

    This assumes people are travelling and not spying.

    California IIRC has passed laws about helicopters hanging around stars' houses, or tried to anyway.

  • Dangerous practice (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Narrowband (2602733) on Monday November 19, 2012 @10:25PM (#42035575)
    One other fact nobody has mentioned is that by flying this over people, PETA is also violating several provisions of the code of conduct established b the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) intended to help keep the public safe. Model helicopters in the $4K range are no-joke dangerous if they hit someone. This sort of activity (especially using a helicopter to harass people) puts at risk the rights of geeks everywhere to build and fly model aircraft, by encouraging legislators and bureaucrats to pass new laws and regulations.

    AMA code [modelaircraft.org]

    If any of the PETA people doing this are AMA members, I hope they have their memberships revoked...
  • by Tastecicles (1153671) on Monday November 19, 2012 @11:18PM (#42036083)

    I don't know about the US, but in the UK the regulations are very specific: Feral pigeons are a pest species, to be destroyed by any lawful means; this includes destruction of eggs/nests, preventive measures on building overhangs against roosting birds (pigeons are by nature cliff dwellers), and shooting them. If a pigeon is on your land (owner or tenant) or you have the authorisation by the landowner to be on his land with a firearm of whatever description covered by whatever ticket necessary (air rifles over 12fpe and pistols over 6fpe require a class 1 firearms ticket, those below require no licence whatsoever), and you have the means to destroy it with a clean shot you're pretty much obliged by Law to do precisely that.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:10AM (#42038239)

    This!

    Although you're thinking of autorotation http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autorotation_(helicopter).

    The longest autorotation in history was performed by Jean Boulet in 1972 when he reached a record altitude of 12,440 m (40,814 ft) in an Aérospatiale Lama. Because of a 63C temperature at that altitude, as soon as he reduced power the engine flamed out and could not be restarted. By using autorotation he was able to land the aircraft safely.

    It's completely controllable, and you can land precisely where you intend to.

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