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Golden Eagle Swoops Down and Nearly Flies Away With Toddler - But Is It Real? (Update: NO!)

"They are extremely swift, and can dive upon their quarry at speeds of more than 150 miles per hour."

Image: YouTube

(Editor's note: As many had speculated, the video in this original post was a clever creation by some film students. See the full story attached at the end of this post.)

This clip will give every parent -- wait, every single person who watches it -- a chill. However, questions being raised about the video's veracity.

It starts innocently enough by showing a beautiful Golden Eagle circling the blue skies above a park in Montreal.

Image: YouTube

For the non-bird watchers among us, according to National Geographic, the Golden Eagle is the largest bird of prey in North America. The bird typically feeds on ground squirrels and rabbits. Nat Geo also reports that the Golden Eagle has the ability to strike with amazing speed: "They are extremely swift, and can dive upon their quarry at speeds of more than 150 miles per hour."

Image: National Geographic - Joe McDonald/Animals Animals

In the viral video, the camera follows the bird as it swoops from the sky into the park, and tries to grab a small child from the grass.

Image: YouTube

The bird did manage to grab and lift the child a few feet off the ground before letting go. The mother and cameraman rushed to the scene to comfort the apparently uninjured baby.

Image: YouTube

Did the baby's hat - featuring two large eyes - have anything to do with attracting the bird from the sky?

Some web commenters have suggested that the video is a fake. We have watched it several times and believe it to be real. The Toronto Star is reporting that police in Montreal say that no one has called in a report about the alleged attempted abduction.

What do you think? Watch the entire clip (content warning for graphic language), and share your opinion in the comments section.  Is it real or is it just a clever clip?


You can watch us debate if the video is real or not during our BlazeCast show from earlier today:


The video is a fake. Part of a "Hoax the Internet" competition from Centre NAD in Montreal.  The admission of "guilt" from the NAD website:

The “Golden Eagle Snatches Kid” video, uploaded to YouTube on the evening of December 18, was made by Normand Archambault, Loïc Mireault and Félix Marquis-Poulin, students at Centre NAD, in the production simulation workshop class of the Bachelors degree in 3D Animation and Digital Design.

The video shows a royal eagle snatching a young kid while he plays under the watch of his dad. The eagle then drops the kid a few feet away. Both the eagle and the kid were created in 3D animation and integrated in to the film afterwards.

The video has already received more than 1,200,000 views on YouTube and has been mentioned by dozens of media in Canada and abroad.

The production simulation workshop class, offered in fifth semester, aims to produce creative projects according to industry production and quality standards while developing team work skills. Hoaxes produced in this class have already garnered attention, amongst others a video of a penguin having escaped the Montreal Biodôme.

If you guessed "fake" -- pat yourself on the back. We cannot wait for next year's efforts.

One last thing…
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