Home Dutch News Cylist, joggers fall foul of terns and buzzard

Cylist, joggers fall foul of terns and buzzard

Published on 23/06/2004

23 June 2003

AMSTERDAM — An elderly cyclist was attacked by a group of brooding terns in the northern Dutch city Delfzijl on Tuesday, while several joggers in the Lelystad region have been injured by an aggressive buzzard. 

Ambulance personnel who attended to the man were also targeted by the terns and a shovel had to be used to keep the aggressive sea birds at bay.  The man was treated in hospital for head wounds.
A police spokesman said the victim unsuspectingly cycled over the Handelskade, a secluded terrain, when the birds attacked. They dive-bombed the man and pecked at his head.

Police said the terns even remained aggressive when the man was lying on the ambulance stretcher, newspaper De Telegraaf reported on Wednesday.

The spokesman said such attacks are rare. “In any case, I have never previously experienced it,” he said.

Terns brood in colonies and can become aggressive if disturbed.

Meanwhile, several joggers have been harrassed and attacked by a nesting buzzard between Lelystad and Dronten in recent weeks, northeast of Amsterdam.

Some people have reportedly suffered head injuries during attacks by the bird which has a wing span of one-and-a-half metres, website nu.nl reported on Wednesday.

Foresty official Egbert van Wijhe said the female buzzard is not a serious danger, though she has been unusually aggressive in her attempts to safeguard her young in a nearby nest.

Van Wijhe said if attacked, people should flap their arms and the bird will retreat. Within two weeks her young will leave the nest and her maternal instincts and aggressive behaviour will ease, he said.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news