A “dive-bombing” bird has turned a popular Colorado jogging trail into a nightmare straight out of the mind of Alfred Hitchcock.
The bird, identified as a male red-winged blackbird, has been pecking at unwary walkers and runners as they pass through the north side of Sloan’s Lake in northwest Denver, KMGH-TV reported. The bird appears to dart out from the nearby bushes and swoop at the pedestrians from behind.
“It’s happened to me at least eight times through here,” Penny Pelak told the station of the attacks.
“He’s dive-bombing her,” Barbara Millman said as she watched the bird take a jogger by surprise.
Karl Brummert, executive director for The Audubon Society of Greater Denver, told KMGH the bird may be protecting its nest in the nearby brush from the park-goers.
Male red-winged blackbirds often become aggressive to protect their territory and their females, according to Colorado Outdoors magazine.
Another blackbird attacked customers outside a Chick-Fil-A in Littleton within the last few years to protect its nest, according to Brummert.
Last month, an English couple claimed they couldn’t leave their house in Knott End-on-Sea in Lancashire because nesting seagulls tried to attack them every time they left.
The nightmare scenario is reminiscent of director Alfred Hitchcock’s classic 1963 film “The Birds,” which follows Tippi Hedren as a horde of birds mysteriously assault a California town.