Birdbrained Criminals: These Crimes Are Totally For The Birds

A white-bellied caique. [David Allen / David-Birdie-Allen at en.wikipedia [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons]

We couldn’t help but notice a recent surge in crimes of the avian variety. We’re not sure what’s going on with our feathered friends, but let’s hope none of them are Hitchcock fans!

"The Birds" promotional poster

“The Birds” promotional poster

Suspected Spy In India Is A Real Stool Pigeon
Indian authorities believe they intercepted a spy in their midst, this one hiding in plain sight. The spy in question was a pigeon. Yes, you read that right, a pigeon. The bird was busted in October after authorities found a note tied to its foot intended for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Pigeon, Pixabay

Pigeon [Pixabay]

According to reports, the note had been written in Urdu, and said, “Modiji, we are not the same as we were in 1971 — Jaish-e-Mohammad.” The pigeon, determined to be a female, is reportedly being kept in a cage in the local police station. It was subjected to X-ray testing to ensure that it was not carrying anything other than the note. The bird is being fed, but has had some of its feathers clipped to keep it from flying back to Pakistan (or wherever it came from, as authorities have not been able to prove it came from Pakistan). “We don’t know how long the pigeon will stay in the police station. Residents are flocking to the police station to see the intruder,” a police source said. [The Independent (UK)]


Australian Police Surprised At Who Left The Bag Of Meth
Police in Western Australia were surprised when a bag of methamphetamine appeared on the floor of a gas station, until they checked the CCTV footage. Had someone dropped it getting out of a car? Had it fallen out of a pocket when a person grabbed their keys? No. Their jaws dropped when they watched the video as a crow fished the bag of drugs out of the rubbish bin, dropping it on the ground before flying off. Authorities are still searching for the person responsible for putting the bag into the garbage, but we suspect this crow might need to find some legal eagles. [The Telegraph]

Owner Of Three Stolen Exotic Birds Hoping The Third Will Be Returned Soon
The owner of a Canadian aviary is grateful for the return of two out of three exotic birds that were stolen from the aviary in December. Two of the birds, a red front macaw and a white umbrella cockatoo, were left on a local street, one by the curb and one in the middle of the road, still in their cages. Fortunately, they were found by humans and taken in from the chill. When the man who found them saw an article in the paper about the theft, he knew he had two of the birds and called authorities. A white bellied caique (like the one above) is still missing. According to reports, the caique can be identified by a band on its leg that bears the letters TRU. If anyone has any information on the theft or encounters the bird, please contact Crime Stoppers at (519) 351-8477. [Chatham Daily News]

Doorbell Camera Captures Birdnappers, Police Still Hunting For The Criminals And The Birdsflorida-birdnappers

A couple in Pinecrest, Florida, is hoping that the video from their doorbell camera will help police catch the robbers who stole the family’s feathered friends. According to reports, one of them left the house at 9:30 A.M, while the other left at 10:30 A.M. The doorbell camera caught the burglars checking to see if anyone was home at 10:55 A.M. that morning. When nobody answered, they proceeded around to the back of the house and cut their way through a metal gate to gain access. They reportedly rummaged through the garage until they found the couple’s birds. Four birds in three cages were reported stolen: one lovebird, one finch, and two Lady Gouldian Finch birds. The men can be seen in the first 20 to 30 seconds of this video, checking the door before they head around to the back of the home. If you recognize these men, please call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS. [WPLG]

Smuggler Busted Trying To Bring 30 Swiftlet Nests Into U.S. From Vietnam For Stew?

A traveler was stopped on his way into Houston in October when authorities found six bags of bird nests stashed in his luggage, among a box of herbs. The nests are illegal to bring into the country, as they can spread foreign viruses, pests we are not prepared for, and even bird flu.

Bird's-nest soup [Stu Spivack, creative commons]

Bird’s-nest soup [Stu Spivack, creative commons]

It is believed that the nests were bring brought in to be used in a very specialized stew that is believed by some followers of Eastern medicine to rejuvenate the immune system and bring back the libido. The bird’s-nest soup is said to be one of the most expensive foods in the world. The smuggler was only fined $300, which we suspect will not be much of a deterrent when a pound of the nests can be sold for well over a thousand dollars overseas. [Dallas News]

Canadian Father Arrested In Delaware After Allowing Teen Daughter To Bait And Kill Protected Seagulls
Christian Lesieur and his teenage daughter were visiting Rehoboth Beach back in October when police had to be called in for the daughter’s antics. Police received multiple complaints of a girl chasing seagulls with a shovel. When they arrived, they discovered the girl had been placing food into a hole in the sand as bait for the birds. When they landed, she would swing at them with a plastic shovel. christian-lesieur-from-rehoboth-beach-pdUnfortunately, she had apparently taken one victim before police arrived. Authorities found a dead seagull that had been thrown in the trash by Lesieur, the girl’s father. One witness told police that he had tried to tell Lesieur that the girl shouldn’t be trying to hit the gulls, but Lesieur had just laughed at him. When police spoke to him, Lesieur was drinking an alcoholic beverage. He even made jokes about the situation while he was in police custody. The girl was in tears over her father being jailed, but police said that he just made comments about her spending the night in jail as well, which just made her even more distraught. In Delaware, all species of gull are protected under the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Lesieur was charged with one count of endangering the welfare of a child and released on $500 bail. The girl was given a written warning the Delaware fish and wildlife enforcement officers. [The News Journal]

Man With Very Unusual Choice Of Headwear Caught Stealing Racing Pigeons
We’re not quite sure how this thief got into the El Viejo Lazaro Botanica in Miami with the bucket on his head, but he was caught on video in the back of the store in the room where many cages of expensive racing pigeons are kept. The thief was wearing what appears to be a garbage bag to hide his shirt. He can be seen rummaging around from cage to cage, apparently picking the birds he wants to steal before shoving them all (40 in total) into one cage. He then managed to climb over a gate with the birds, and was faced with the new challenge of getting back over the fence with his ill-gotten bird booty. Watch the video from Inside Edition to see how he managed to clear that one. [Inside Edition]


Birds of Prey In Scotland Snatching Underwear From Swimmers To Line Their Nests
Red kites nesting on an estate at Angus Glens in Scotland have reportedly been snatching underwear from swimmers at a local swimming hole. Officials from the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds discovered the nicked knickers when they investigated the nest in order to ring and record four new hatchlings over the summer. According to the estate’s gamekeeper, it’s the second year in a row that the kites have been found to have taken undergarments from swimmers. Whatever is causing the birds to steal the skivvies, officials say it’s working for the breeding pair. Last year the kites only had two chicks. This year, they had four little ones. [BBC News]

Main photo: A white-bellied caique. [David Allen / David-Birdie-Allen at en.wikipedia [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons]