UPDATE: Definite hoax by film students.
Original column follows: Video hoaxes are older than the Internet (see Bigfoot), but video editing technology is so good now that it is getting difficult to separate online fiction from reality.
Tuesday, someone posted a video on YouTube of an eagle allegedly nabbing a child in a Montreal (that’s in Canada) park.
In real time, it looks very real. The eagle swoops down and lifts the unsuspecting child a couple feet off the ground before dropping the babe largely unharmed to the turf.
The cameraman captures the moment of liftoff, but the camera loses focus as he rushes to the alleged rescue.
Skeptics say the video can’t be real. One animal expert says the bird is not a golden eagle, as is alleged, but is an osprey. I don’t see how the species of the bird disproves the video.
But other folks with more time on their hands (and eagle eyesight) say the video has been edited. They point out the eagle loses a wing at one point in the video, and a shadow on the ground suddenly appears as the toddler terror swoops down.
Someone else says the child seems to hover in the air after being released.
It’s probably not real. Few things this interesting actually are. But it’s probably a good thing. Parents have enough to worry about.