The Baxter Bulletin first reported the news, with video, that an unidentified pilot had resumed the practice of dropping live turkeys from an airplane over the Yellville Turkey Trot.
The practice was stopped several years ago because it violates federal flight rules to drop objects from planes and because animal rights groups had protested the dropping of the flightless birds. The drop Saturday was wildly cheered by the crowd. Typical was a comment from a local woman on Facebook:
In almost 25 years of attending Turkey Trot, I don’t remember being more happy and proud of being part of this community. What an exciting day!
Humans in Yellville are confident the birds’ ability to glide prevents injury and say that the birds don’t mind. None has been interviewed.
A Facebook page is devoted to the Phantom Pilot.
The FAA says it will investigate. PETA has offered a reward for a conviction. The plane’s number was readily apparent .
The Phantom Pilot Facebook page includes the image below, of a bird being flung from a rooftop and a reader’s comment:
Yep eat ur heart out tree huggers and stupid ppl who think wild turkeys can’t fly .I do believe those M R wings O S M R and he is flying.lol
Does the fact that turkeys can survive being flung from buildings and planes (and, over the years, some have not) make it OK? Proud?