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Pigeon shoots present a problem for a lot of people. There are plenty of dedicated hunters who have issues with shooting birds for sport with no intent of putting something on the table. They ask, why not blow orange clay birds out of the sky instead of living animals? Then there are others who consider the statue befouling creatures the equivalent of flying rats. But as some animal rights activists found out – much to their astonishment – pigeon shooters have guns . . .

Something called SHARK (SHowing Animals Respect and Kindness) tried to stop a planned pigeon shoot in South Carolina last weekend as reports. Their weapon of choice: shame.

The plan: send something called a Mikrokopter – basically a camera-equipped drone – to film the goings on.

The resulting footage was do doubt destined for YouTube and the local nightly news. And the plan appeared to have worked. When shooters heard of the SHARK mission to document the slaughter, they packed up to leave.

According to Steve Hindi, SHARK’s president, “Once they knew nothing was going to stop us, the shooting stopped and the cars lined up to leave.” But some people don’t know how to handle victory. He decided to send the copter up anyway, even though all the shooting had stopped.

“Seconds after it hit the air, numerous shots rang out,” Hindi said in the release. “As an act of revenge for us shutting down the pigeon slaughter, they had shot down our copter.”

He claimed the shooters were “in tree cover” and “fled the scene on small motorized vehicles.”

Imagine that. Guys with shotguns shooting down a flying camera that just ruined their event. Hard to believe.

“It is important to note how dangerous this was, as they were shooting toward and into a well-travelled (sic) highway,” Hindi stated in the release. He said someone from SHARK called the Colleton County Sheriff’s Department, which took a report of the incident.

The Colleton County Sheriff’s Department filed a malicious damage to property incident report.

According to the report, Hindi told the responding deputy the group’s remote-controlled aircraft “was hovering over U.S. 601 when he heard a shot come from the wood line. The shot sounded to him that it was of small caliber.”

This is, of course, Hindi’s version of what happened. If the incident, um, went down as described, shooting toward a highway was pretty stupid. But is hovering a remote-controlled drone over a US highway – as Hindi appears to have admitted – much smarter?

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  1. If it was over the highway, bad idea shooting at it. But the second it crosses into private property, blow it to oblivion.

  2. I feel bad for the pilot, those cost several thousand dollars to build, not counting the video cam. I doubt he was even affiliated with SHARK.

  3. I think this will become a trend if these things start getting used too much in America.

    I’ve no problem with UAV’s patrolling the border. But once a UAV starts showing up inland, it starts infringing on the 4th Amendment in a big way.

  4. I’m in the pigeons are “the equivalent of flying rats” camp. Good show on the drone destroyers.

  5. “But is hovering a remote-controlled drone over a US highway – as Hindi appears to have admitted – much smarter?”

    As opposed to…? I don’t get the question and the implication that SHARK did anything illegal or potentially dangerous.

    • The “drone” in question weighs several pounds. If you’re driving along at 70+ mph in a convertible and take that thing in the noodle, there’s a very good chance of becoming unconscious and/or dead.

      Flying any R/C aircraft, especially a helicopter, over a populated area, much less one that almost certainly result in a major accident if your bird comes down on someone’s windshield, is an extremely dangerous and stupid undertaking.

      The aircraft in question also uses a rather large LiPo battery, which are prone to explode and burn when overloaded, which tends to happen when you crash one with speed controllers / motors spooled up.

      I would go so far as to say it’s much more dangerous than a few errant pellets of bird shot.

  6. Check out the video. The highway looks more like a road, which they are standing on and taping from. While you hear shots being fired, it’s not possible to say the copter was being shot at, in fact in the video, you hear a guy say that. Just before the copter comes down, you hear a gust of wind on the camera mic, could that have brought the copter down? It seems intact, but is descending pretty fast. Damage on impact with the ground? No pics of bullet holes or exactly what the damage is.

    • Having watched the video, I can assume a few things having been flying R/C aircraft for a decade or so.

      – The motors were spooled up and the flight was controlled until it hit the ground.

      – It is extremely unlikely that anything hit the helicopter– the particular design in question is very fragile. A single round of bird shot would take off several rotor blades and almost certainly destroy the battery. A single rifle round of any caliber would completely destroy it. Had that happened, it would have come straight down and crashed hard, likely with a fire almost immediately from the damaged LiPo.

      – The camera work and flying are very amateur. It would not be a stretch to assume the crash was pilot error, and/or the video is shot in such a way to suggest it was shot down, when it clearly was not.

      In short, I smell BS.

      • That was definitely a “controlled” landing from my personal experience with RC. Never seen a perfect landing except on youtube.

  7. What a bunch of rednecks.

    If it was over a highway, those guys should be fined or put in jail.

    As a gun owner, people with guns who shoot down something like this make all gun owners look bad. It’s such bad PR when gun owners need good PR.

  8. If that weird looking, homemade, remote controlled contraption crashed it must have been a malicious action from some outside force right? As funny as it sounds, I’d like to see the proof. If I drop my camera at the range maybe I can claim it was shot out of my hand. It must have been with all those evil gun owners shooting all around. The intellectually challenged anti gunners (retards) probably crashed their own chopper and don’t want to look any more stupid.

  9. KWAL, way to keep the conversation classy. Just what we need – more gun owners using the word retards. Does anyone wonder why anti-gun people don’t like gun people? Because you just said that. Way to bridge the gap.

    • Anti-gun people don’t like gun people because they’re ill-informed projectionists who try to pull everyone down to their level of pathetic mental and moral weakness, so as to feel better about their own insecurities.

      Anything else is just decoration.

    • I have a hard time feeling bad about him using the word retard. It might not be the most polite thing, but since the anti-gun groups have no problem referring to us as hicks, yokels, rednecks, fanatics, etc… all I can say is what goes around, comes around.

    • Antigunners use “retard” as a pejorative against gun owners all the time. IE, at the same time as campaigning against it being used as pejorative in any cases they deem unacceptable, if they’re a tried and true free speech is free for me leftie.

  10. Anti gun people don’t like guns. They have no problem calling us retards for observing our rights,so it is appropriate to use the term to describe people who disagree with their own civil liberties.

    In any case, this video proves nothing. If the drone were to have been “shot down”, it would have been impossible to fly it back down to the launch site. Instead the craft would have exploded into bitty pieces and crashed into the woods somewhere. The video supports a conclusion of “Pilot Error”, not a golden BB.

    • “ other news on Arizona News Tonight, bolt action .308 rifles are flying off the shelves as Mexican Drug Drones keep getting shot down by citizens. The Sinaloa Cartel spokesman, President Felipe Calderon, spoke out against the drone shootdowns at a press conference in Mexico City. “

      • Yep. “No More Weapons!” In other news, Arizona Sheriff Paul Babeu, long a spokesman against the flood of illegal Mexicans in Arizona, was just outed by his gay ex-lover of three years, who turns out to be….an illegal Mexican. No, really, that last bit’s real news. What a world.

  11. Is it safe for drones to be flying over busy freeways? Is a license needed to fly an unmanned aircraft in South Carolina? How much practice had the pilot had with this very new technology, as it kind of sounds like he pulled the wrong ahem…trigger on the UAV.

    What a bunch of idiots….

  12. So Shark is permitted to fly their oversized toy over private property where it could cause injury or death if it fell from the sky? Maybe they need to rethink this since guns are going off below and the copter doesn’t take a hit too well.
    Or maybe they need another cause.

  13. “Seconds after it hit the air” A UAV crashes a few seconds after take off during a hunt where there were probably gun shots going off anyways? I’ve been around quite a few of those infernal machines.

    Amateurs/novices piloting rotary engine UAVs will usually crash in the few seconds after take off as the ground effect drops off, and they find out their vertical lift wasn’t sufficient. The craft starts to drop without enough time to re-stabilize and shunts into the ground hard.

    At least they got a ton of free publicity out of it either way. Why didn’t they have ground cameras as well for liability reasons? Clearly poor activists too.

  14. These drones have a great potential for invasion of privacy, combined with annoying noise as your neighbor hovers one over your backyard pool/hot tub. They will become illegal as soon as the peasants start using them to spy on the antics of their elected and unelected aristocracy. Think of the fun you could have flying one of these over the Kennedy compound in Hyannisport, or flying one over John Kerry’s little ski chalet in Sun Valley, Idaho. Anyone want to guess how Michael Moore and other Hollywood glitterati would react to one of these hovering over, and filming them, in their privacy-walled mansions? The rich and famous will soon get the Feds to put up some VERY expensive licensing and “training” requirements on these drones. “When drones are outlawed, only the Feds and the media will have drones.”

  15. I would shoot your stupid drone down and you would be driving away In a peice of Swiss cheese.

  16. South Carolina fired the 1st shot of the Civil War. I’m proud we fired the 1st shot of the coming “Drone War”. I read they are predicting 30,000 drones over the US by 2020. On a slightly different note.. The government has built “FEMA camps”; (prisons aren’t built to look at, now are they?). Homeland security just contracted 450 million 40 caliber rounds of ammo. Drones, camps, bullets…..sounds like the government is getting ready for something. I hope Americans are ready to take back America.

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