The antics of a menacing predator causing years of chaos for a glider in central Victoria have been caught on camera.
Alan Beavis, of Bendigo, captured a moment a territorial wedge-tailed eagle swooped his ultralight glider as he flew over Boort.
Mr Beavis is one of many pilots flying in the area over the past four years who have been confronted by the eagle, nicknamed Jack the Ripper.
He told The Weekly Times Jack usually attacked from behind, surprising pilots who aren’t aware it’s even there until the first squawk.
The bird’s strong talons have torn shreds from the glider’s fabric shell on numerous occasions, with the glider needing about three repairs in the past four years.
Mr Beavis suspected Jack was protecting a nest near a Yando airstrip where ultralight pilots often took off.
“I usually focus on the talons — if they’re down it probably intends to try and rip the wing.”
“It was scary the first time (he attacked the glider) and I guess it’s still a little unnerving when it’s in close,” he said.
“That particular eagle is very territorial and will squawk and try to get you out of its territory by attacking or flying close.
But not all encounters are menacing.
“Other times we’ve flown with eagles and they are more inquisitive. They’ll just fly around and come and have a look. When that happens it’s a fantastic experience.”