Truth or Hoax: Did an Eagle Really Take a Cat in Saugerties?
There are predators everywhere you look in New York state, but a recent claim from a Saugerties, NY resident takes things to a whole other level.
On the ground, the Hudson Valley is home to black bear, mink, fox, and many other sharp-toothed hunters. In the sky, eagles and peregrine falcons (who recently had babies on the Mid-Hudson Bridge) patrol the skies alongside other raptors looking for prey. But did our nations most famous bird really take a local housecat?
Reported Eagle vs. Cat Near Saugerties, NY
"I was just driving in Malden, NY and saw an eagle take off with a cat... I was unable to get a picture because I was driving. I am so so sorry to whomever lost their kitty", said the post in the Saugerties Village Facebook group. While many might think that the post is a prank, the comments all expressed legitimate concern.
Saugerties, NY Community Reacts to Reported Eagle vs Cat
"I would’ve crashed my car at the sight of this. So sorry you were a witness to such a distressing event", said one commenter. "I am so done with the eagles. There are so many in our area and so many people losing their fur babies", offered another. So can a bald eagle really snatch a cat? The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) was contacted for more information.
New York State DEC Responds
"Nesting bald eagles having been widespread in the region for several decades. During this time, DEC has not received any reports of conflicts between eagles and pets", came the response from the NYS DEC. They continued by offering another solution for the sight:
Bald eagles routinely scavenge road-killed animals and that behavior may explain the observation. Pet owners are encouraged to keep a close eye on their pets, especially when outside of their homes
So was a cat killed by a car, and then taken by an eagle? Did it happen at all? "Bald Eagles generally weigh [about the same amount of an average housecat] so it is hard to say for sure", the NYS DEC continued, "as mentioned, DEC has not received any reports of conflicts between eagles and pets.