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Animals,  Viral

Brave bird hitches ride on unsuspecting eagle owl midflight

This is the moment a brave bird decided to land on an unsuspecting eagle owl.


The Indian eagle owl was in full flight when the black drongo hitched a ride on its back.

Photographer Mayur Shinde, 41, managed to capture the exact moment the drongo touched down on the larger bird. They could both be seen flying very close to each other up until the unscheduled landing.

A perfect landing (Picture: Mayur Shinde/Caters)

Shinde, from Jabalpur, India, took the photos earlier this year when she was visiting Jaisalmer for bird watching.

She said: ‘Drongos have always been known to be pugnacious and fight off other birds from their territories. ‘The Indian eagle owl is at least three times bigger and still the drongo continues to act like its intended behaviour’.

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The drongos are able to mimic the sounds made by many different species that inhabit its environment, including birds such as pied babblers, glossy starlings, sociable weavers and pale chanting goshawks as well as mammals like meerkats.

The photo of the eagle owl and bird was taken in Jaisalmer, India (Picture/Mayur Shinde/Caters)

The drongos carry out an elaborate con.

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They give their own genuine alarm call when they spot a predator approaching – essentially behaving as sentries – and other animals come to trust that this call signals real danger.

But they sometimes give this alarm call when no danger exists to fool other animals into fleeing and abandoning their food. Then the drongos swoop down for a free lunch.


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