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Police Vulture Training Not a Success 65

Posted by samzenpus
from the didn't-have-the-stomach-for-it dept.
rbrausse writes "Some time ago Slashdot covered the German police vulture training scheme; now it is time for a follow-up. BBC reports that the project has failed to take off. The trained vulture hasn't shown interest in working as a detective and confuses human with animal remains. Additionally the bird is shy and prefers to travel by foot."
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Police Vulture Training Not a Success

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  • Glad to know that if I'm assaulted and left at the very edge of my life in Germany, there will be trained police vultures to come finish me off so they can begin devouring my flesh.
    • You definitely didn't RTFA or RTFSummary. What makes me curious is how you knew it was Germany if you didn't even make it all the way through RTFHeadline.

      My guess is it happened like this:
      Commenter reads "Police Vulture Training", scans down noticing Germany is mentioned, & quickly comments with the first thing that came to mind with no concern for relevance to the article.
      • by hawguy (1600213)

        You definitely didn't RTFA or RTFSummary. What makes me curious is how you knew it was Germany if you didn't even make it all the way through RTFHeadline.

        My guess is it happened like this:

        Commenter reads "Police Vulture Training", scans down noticing Germany is mentioned, & quickly comments with the first thing that came to mind with no concern for relevance to the article.

        I read the article and the previous poster had a reasonable reaction. Obviously he was exaggerating about the vultures finishing him off, but hey, vultures are carrion eaters, so it's not unreasonable to think that after they go through all of the trouble to locate a dead body that they'll stop in and have a bite to eat to reward themselves for a job well-done.

        • You mean, like all search and rescue dogs first eat you, then report finding you ?

          • by hawguy (1600213)

            You mean, like all search and rescue dogs first eat you, then report finding you ?

            Since drug-sniffing dogs have been known to ingest the drugs they are searching for, it doesn't seem impossible that an unattended cadaver dog would take a nibble at his catch. Dogs are scavengers, and while dead rotten meat isn't their preferred diet, they will sometimes eat carrion.

      • by Cwix (1671282)

        Actually his comment seems more relevant then your trollish comment.

        • by Rakarra (112805)

          Actually his comment seems more relevant then your trollish comment.

          His comment shows that the only things he knows about vultures come from really shitty movies and comic books.

          A turkey vulture will no more "finish you off" than you would fly up a thermal.

    • Don't worry. Vultures are carrion eaters. They won't touch your naughty bits until you're actually dead. It's something about how they smell, apparently.
    • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

      by syousef (465911)

      They were trying to prove that there are in fact creatures that are stupider, lazier, dirtier, more opportunistic and definitely willing to strike when a man is down than police.

      • They were trying to prove that there are in fact creatures that are stupider, lazier, dirtier, more opportunistic and definitely willing to strike when a man is down than police.

        They should have tried lawyers, then.
        Vultures are minor league in comparison.

  • too bad. Have they given any thoughts to breeding for rather than training for the correct qualities in the target? With a little patience, amazing results can be achieved in a relatively short time. A Russian experiment showed that in as little as 50 years, wild foxes can be selectively breed to be as friendly as puppies.

    • by rubycodez (864176)
      fifty years, eh? that's nice, but as former employee of government owned facility, I can assure you that funding for projects is usually given to those that will finish before the funders and fundees are of retirement age or pushing up the daisies.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by aix tom (902140)

        That's the problem these days.

        If humans had ever thought that way, we'd still be living in caves. Very few people who ever started something like a cathedral ever saw it finished.

        • by N0Man74 (1620447)

          That's the problem these days.

          If humans had ever thought that way, we'd still be living in caves. Very few people who ever started something like a cathedral ever saw it finished.

          I absolutely agree, however it should be pointed out that cathedral makers also didn't have to worry about keeping their shareholders happy and quarterly profit reports.

          • by rbrausse (1319883)

            the tithe was a dead serious business; don't underestimate the creativity of medievals generating profit out of nothing

            • by rubycodez (864176)
              or more to the point, creativity in creating a system of brainwashing for profit and power that went on to maim, murder, molest tens of millions over the centuries. I'd say Hitler would be proud, but then he also was devout member.
  • by Hsien-Ko (1090623) on Thursday June 30, 2011 @11:50PM (#36630474)
    I've never seen a pun so logical with the problem like this.
    • by syousef (465911)

      I've never seen a pun so logical with the problem like this.

      You would have preferred "Failure to lunch"?

    • by lexsird (1208192)

      Indeed, the project was a "dead end". And the Mayor has a "bone to pick" over this. The buzzards failed to "make their bones", turning the project into "road kill".

      The lactose intolerant should know to stay away from cheesy article titles such as these.

  • "Police Vulture Training Not a Success" This title sounds like this article was mis-filed and really belongs on "The Onion."
  • Vultures are cool (Score:5, Interesting)

    by wordsnyc (956034) on Friday July 01, 2011 @12:09AM (#36630530) Homepage

    We have turkey vultures that return to nest in a tree on our property every year. They're intelligent critters, and they do not "finish off" injured animals. They do clean up roadkill remarkably quickly. Late in the summer their young leave the nest and the parents follow them around our yard as they learn to fly.

  • by sg_oneill (159032) on Friday July 01, 2011 @12:12AM (#36630546)

    In other news the police lion project was also cancelled after the cats proved more interest in tearing the police-dogs limb to limb and then feasting on the arms of the trainers.

  • Vultures didn't make it into 2. They should have trained with Hellions instead.
    • by mrax (1825176)
      Heh, I read the headline in the similar way. Jim Raynor types riding grenade launching hoverbikes. Oh well...
  • FTFA:

    It had seemed such a great idea. What if the police had sniffer dogs that could fly? Dogs do not have wings, they realised, but birds do.

    - I have suspicions about these cops. How did they come up with this? Were they sitting in a circle, passing a bong around, when the usual conversation of "My hands are HUGE" was all of a sudden interrupted by a guy, who watched too much Discovery channel?

    -Oooooh, guys, I have an idea! It's BRILLIANT. What if birds could be cops?
    -Holly shit, you are onto something there, man! But wouldn't it be better if cops were birds?
    -I like birds.
    -I want birds.
    -I am a bird.
    -No, you are not.
    -Yes, I am.
    -No, you

    • by PitaBred (632671)

      Vultures actually have a better sense of smell than dogs. There's scientific merit to the idea. It's just turning out that the vulture's brain isn't wired to be trained properly.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ..they used a teenage vulture.

  • by Walt Dismal (534799) on Friday July 01, 2011 @04:39AM (#36631426)
    The key problem was that the bird kept circling local McDonalds' and refused to leave. The trainer explained: "The smell of death made him very excited."
  • by lexsird (1208192) on Friday July 01, 2011 @05:33AM (#36631620)

    Aside from the obvious title fun, pigs are smarter than buzzards by far and they are already used to find truffles. Seriously, if they can be trained for truffles, they could be trained for finding a buried body. Imagine the hijinks of having a pig that can find both. It would be a twisted sort of lottery on what the pig found unless you could get him to distinguish between the two and signal which it is. Train them to find weed too would be a great trick. And bombs! Yes!

    "Today, Pigs found a bomb and saved the day, details at 6 and 10!"
    "Did you hear what that news guy called the police?"
    "No, I wasn't paying attention."
    "He said the pigs found a bomb!"
    "Bravo for the pigs then, they weren't out handing out tickets then."
    "No, it was real pigs that found the bomb."
    "...as opposed to part time pigs?"
    "No, these were real pigs as in oink oink, four legs, root around pigs!"
    "I get it, they were full time pigs."
    "No!"
    "No? Either they are pigs or not?"
    "Yes, they are pigs but they are swine."
    "Aren't all cops swine?"
    "From many's point of view, but these aren't cops they are pigs. Well, they are cops, but they are pigs first then cops second."
    "So you are going "good cop, bad cop" with this? And pigs are the bad cops?"
    "No, no no! These pigs are good cops, they found that bomb! But they aren't cops, they are pigs!"
    "Whatever, now you are just being a dick."

  • I thought vultures employed police, not the other way around.
  • anything? At least for once it's not the US tax payers money German cops 1-0 American cops.

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