AMSTERDAM, Holland — As authorities scramble for effective and advanced ways to counter the increasing number of rogue drones buzzing around our skies, Dutch National Police have come up with something a little more unusual: the mighty eagle.
In what Dutch company “Guard from Above” calls a “low tech solution for a high tech problem,” bald eagles have been trained to swoop in and neatly dispose of any unwanted electronic interlopers.
“Two of the most impressive characteristics of birds of prey are their speed and their power,” said Guard From Above co-founder Ben de Keijzer in a media release.
“Sometimes the solution to a hypermodern problem is more obvious than you might think.”
A growing problem
In October 2015, in response to pilots reporting 100 drone sightings a month, the Federal Aviation Administration announced it was testing anti-drone technology that would counter rogue drones flying within a five-mile radius of selected airports.
The technology reportedly detects radio signals from rogue drones and uses tracking technology to force the drone to land.
The project was only at research stage, and at the time of the announcement there was no time line in place.
In January of this year nonprofit group Open Briefing also published a report that highlighted how far consumer drones have evolved and how ill-prepared authorities currently are to combat them.
Countermeasures cited in the report included signal jamming, lasers, and the deployment of missiles, rockets and bullets, where it’s acknowledged there is high risk of collateral damage, and potential for “catastrophic damage” if they miss their target.