View Full Version : Anyone got any good Animal Aviationy Stories

Celtic Emerald
21st Nov 2001, 21:11
Well all of us old timers on PPRuNers are aware of Captain Squealch's run in with the deliquent cat who escaped from a little old ladies box and ran amuke in his cabin. Of course said captain came to the rescue AFTER checking he had zipped up his fly of course and threatened to divert the bloody aircraft & make the elderly lady shoulder the cost if she didn't get her mad moggie under control promto. Jeez said captain don't mess around does he, tough cookie eh? ;)

Then there was the case of the pot bellied pig who was allowed travel first class abroad an american airline. He took up two first class seats, rambled up & down the aisle sticking his snout into other pax's food much to their distress. Fairly mild so far but unfortunately as the plane was landing the pig got distressed and went beserk charging up and down the aisle. The pax went hysterical, standing on their seats to avoid said pig.

The airline have decided to review it's rules about animals travelling in the cabin for eh so called alledged medical reasons maintained by their owners.


21st Nov 2001, 23:30
There was a trip with 750 kgs of live lobsters... After unloading them, spent ten minutes chasing the ones that had got lose around the cabin... :eek: And if anyone asks you to fly goats, never ever accept! :mad:

22nd Nov 2001, 00:52
A story recounted in an American magazine ... 1950s and propliners working hard. Madam was not allowed to have her cat in the cabin but was reassured that the hold was heated and that she could see it at the stop off point.

At said point, she rushes down the stairs demanding to see her pet. Unfortunately, the heating was offset by an ill fitting cargo door ... :rolleyes:

When handed her still deep frozen moggie, she did not accept the cargo handler's assurance that death would have been swift.

Lon More
22nd Nov 2001, 01:04
Paxboy, for similar reason the control for heating the cargo bay is known as the "dead dog switch"

DX Wombat
22nd Nov 2001, 04:40
A year or two ago when one's brother was working as a ramp rat in HM's ex Penal Colony Dunnunda, an interstate flight arrived at Perth with a cat-carrying box in the hold. The hold was unheated and the box contained an ex-cat. In the terminal a little old lady, who was coming to live in Perth permanently, enquired where she could collect Tiddles as she was really looking forward to seeing him again. The enquiry was overheard by another ramp rat who reported his findings to the original team. Panic ensued. What were they going to do? They couldn't risk upsetting the little old lady and possibly have her so upset that she too became an "ex". Then one had a bright idea. There were lots and lots of feral moggies around the Domestic terminal all they had to do was find one of similar appearance and substitute it. The great cat hunt followed and after much cursing and swearing and licking of bloody wounds (the feral moggies are not known for their cuddliness) a suitable replacement was found and stuffed unceremoniously into the now vacant box - Tiddles having received the traditional "burial" in the bin. A smiling ramp rat carried the new Tiddles to his unsuspecting owner. "That's not my Tiddles" she said. "It must be dear" was the reply, "it was the only cat on board" "No, it is definitely not my Tiddles" Thinking it might be the foul feline language emanting from the box the ramp rat continued "They often get a bit upset but this is your box and your cat" "It can't possibly be my Tiddles" retorted the old lady, "unless you have been working miracles. Tiddles is dead, we had him stuffed so that we could keep him with us rather than leaving him buried over in the east"
:eek: :D :cool:

22nd Nov 2001, 22:54
Well Celtic Em, this may qualify as an animal avitiony story, if only because it's true, even if no great altitude was involved...

Years ago when my three kids were just a little older than infants mum and I loaded up the '85 Mitsubishi Magna (2.6 litre with overdrive) and headed out of the backblocks of New South Wales toward the coast a day and a half away.

The roads out there are long straight and flat and in those days my eyesight was excellent. (Times have changed since learning about self abuse on this site from another thread.)

So it was that after a half hour's grinding up through the gears I had that Magna up to at least 110kph when I saw in that vast distance dead ahead a crow dancing about a sizeable piece of roadkill. So saw all my pax.

(Likely a 'roo. Had it been a wombat, there would be a capsized Merc coach about with 45 passengers dead.)

'You'd better slow down.' I was advised.

Now firstly, a bloke doesn't slow down for a live crow (raven in other climes) and a compacted roo, particularly when a bloke is en route for the coast.

And secondly, I explained, your average crow, while a large black mean-spirited opportunist, is an exceptionally intelligent bird and will be long gone by the time we got there. (Putting the Magna into overdrive...111kph...112kph...)

In fact, I further explained, I had recently read in 'Scientific American' that your average crow can count to five. This was proven somehow with five men with shotguns entering a tent in a crow infested wheatfield and the crows would all decamp and stay decamped even if four men left the tent....or something. (Which only proves that a crow is more intelligent than five men with shotguns.) 113kph...114kph...

'You'd better slow down. Maybe this crow didn't read the story...' I was advised.

Getting closer it was obvious, I explained, that this crow was big fat and healthy (hopping here and there on the carcass, picking at this and that, hither and yon indeed) and that this crow was a roadkill evolutionary survivor and would be long gone by the time (..115kph...) we got there. (Which would be very soon. Imminent, in fact.)

'You'd better slow down. Maybe this crow didn't read Darwin.' I was advised.

As we accelerated into the scene and three kids in the back were all heads forward between the front seats (..116kph..) I remembered two relevant facts:

Fact one:
The roo in two dimensions at my front wheels reminded me of the evening before at dinner in the town's diner ("Chew & Spew") where one mate said 'This chicken's pretty tender', and his wife agreed, 'A twenty two wheeler will do that..'(..117kph..)

Fact two:
A self-employed builder mate when on a week's break would tear around the country with his wife in a 1.3litre 5 speed Ford Laser (if this is Queensland it must be Tuesday) until a sulphur-crested cockatoo slammed through his windscreen and knocked him out. They survived.

Fact three:
Crows count better than Magna drivers and a big fat crow looming in your windscreen with a closing speed of 118kph appears somewhat larger than a sulphur-crested cockatoo.

Now, the Mitsubishi company is known for the manufacture of some notable machinery. Indeed you may recall the infamous A0E6 (Davaar?) 'Zero' fighter aircraft of the Pacific War. But as the crow (..119kph..) filled the windscreen I recalled that the company provided little in the way of armour protection for pilots. The pilots you see, were dispensible.


Would Mitsubishi Australia Pty Ltd provide better windscreen protection on the '85 Magna? Were '85 Magna drivers dispensible? We were about to find out. (..121 kph..)

The '85 Mitsubishi Magna windscreen is raked back at about 45 degrees. The crow collided with the windscreen at a closing speed of 122kph. The windscreen remained intact. The crow accelerated aloft.

The roo underfoot, so to speak, is mostly no longer relevant to the story.

We departed the scene (...123kph...) with the kids peering skyward out the back window. 'That crow ok?' I asked. 'Yeah dad, it's going up!' said the six year old (a pianist).

I knew it. Oz might have the stupidest crows in the world, but like our footballers, they're tough...(might check out this Shinto thing..)

'..and up!' Said the pianist. 'It's stopped going up now dad...' she said looking more backward than upward. 'OK... coming down now Dad...down...down... all the way down now Dad..and stopped there on that roo."

The remainder of the trip was without incident until the Newcastle earthquake of '89. But that's another story.

23rd Nov 2001, 13:22
What about that great true story...

Check your insurance for this one. A Japanese fishing boat was lost last month when it landed a catch beyond it's normal capacity. Picture this. Small fishing fleet fishing away as they do, when suddenly a huge splash occurs just off the bow. The fishermen, wondering what on earth caused it, rush to the bows, just in time to see a dead cow re-surface like some Polaris missile, before falling back into the water.

A few seconds later, another huge splash at the stern, and they rush back just in time to see yet another dead cow emerge from below and head sky-wards for a few seconds before gravity took over again. Seconds later the boat shudders under an enormous impact as a third cow, now having got the range sorted out, scores a direct hit straight through the hold and the hull, with the resultant upsurge of water, and rapid sinking of the boat.

As the crew took to the life rafts, they noticed more cows raining down from above all around them, and then to add insult to injury, discovered that Isaac Newtons 2nd law of gravity was true. That is that cow crap, being pancake shaped, is more aerodynamic than the cow itself, and takes longer to fall to earth, or sea as the case may be, but still has the same deadly accuracy.

Before you go rushing off to check your dictionary for an obscure English slang meaning of the word "Cows", we would hasten to point out that we mean those large beasts with cloven hooves, sacred in India, eaten in Europe, customarily believed to be lacking in aviatory skills.

This anyway was the story that the crew gave their incredulous rescuers. Naturally, the men were promptly arrested on suspicion of perpetrating a marine insurance fraud. After all, if one wanted to invent a cock and bull story about the sinking of a ship, what better than the tried and tested flying cow story?

Fortunately for them, officials from Japan and Russia, which controls the nearby Island of Sakhalin, began an investigation. It revealed that a Russian cargo plane had been commandeered by corrupt soldiers, who ordered the crew to take a cargo of stolen cattle for sale elsewhere. During the flight the cattle became restless, and the crew, fearing a catastrophic stampede, opened the rear cargo door...............

Out of the door stampeded the cargo; being somewhat non-aerodynamic, their subsequent flight can best be described using the word "plummet". The fishermen below must have thought the world was ending. The seas are not safe!!!

Kalium Chloride
23rd Nov 2001, 19:14
I know a duck that flew upside-down and quacked up. :D :D

24th Nov 2001, 16:28
Then there was the B-727 in Alaska that reported a "fish strike".

Yup, it actually happend: The plane, flying low spooked an eagle with a newly caught salmon in his (Or her) claws, bird drops fish, fish hits plane.

25th Nov 2001, 08:09
“I know not how the truth may be,
I say the tale as ‘twas said to me”

Dramatis Personae:

ProPF: a Prominent Political Figure
Pillar: a Pillar of the Community
Lad: Son of Pillar
Boss: a Manager for an airline
Davaar: a Provincial Lawyer. Oppressing widows, my job. And Orphans. Also counsel for airline. Much the same thing, come to think of it. These are the facts, ma’am, just the facts. Only the names have been changed, I hope unrecognisably. Sylvester may sue.
Authority: Men and women in airline uniform, Horsemen, general cast of many.
Sylvester: a cat

The scene: Far away and long ago, though not far or long enough.

ProPF boarded a commercial flight, checking Sylvester. In a box. Sylvester owned by close friend of ProPF. Sylvester’s frame of mind unknown, but apparently resigned. He didn’t know, he just didn’t know.

ProPF arrives, disembarks, goes to carousel. Awaits Sylvester.

Sylvester also arrives. Is unloaded by Lad, newly employed as baggage handler by airline. Sylvester in box, therefore baggage. OK, apply SOP. Put Sylvester and box on trolley with the rest of the baggage. Trolley connected to tractor and other trolleys. No trolley dolly. Sylvester becoming uncertain. Baggage + Sylvester and box tossed into the System of belts, pulleys, tunnels, elevations and depressions, and eventually spewed out over delivery carousel. Box + Sylvester perform hesitation roll, bunting and looping manoeuvres about three axes, in the spirit of the carousel. Box still Okay, but not Sylvester. No longer resigned. Dignity offended, but no broken limbs. Nine lives. Now he knows; Life’s a Carousel. Loud protest from Sylvester.

ProPF retrieves box. Releases Sylvester. Sylvester, known for strict teetotal history, now has drunken gait. But not silent. Deep throated protest continues from Sylvester.

ProPF goes ballistic. Some allege mouth frothing. Shrieks for Authority. Authority arrives. Authority summons Boss. Boss, unlike Sylvester, not known for strict teetotal history. Some suspect Boss has in fact as well as reputation been at the sauce. Let's keep to the facts, ma’am.

Boss summons Lad. Boss fires Lad on the spot.

Lad repairs home forthwith, reports to Pillar.

Now Pillar ballistic. Pillar calls, instructs Davaar to bring airline, Boss, Authority, and Sylvester to ruin. Ummm. Davaar acts for airline. Conflict of interest! Conflict of interest? Okay. Pillar will do it himself. Knows exactly who to call. TV and radio.

No good will come of this. Davaar arranges meet Pillar. Meet, coffee house. Two coffees, Davaar’s dime. Cool heads. Better than. See what we can do. Longer view.

Davaar calls airline. No one answers. Natch. Cut story short. Several days. No court involvement. Many negotiations. Boss not fired. No mention of sauce. Pillar not on TV. Not on radio. Was ProPF really trafficker lang syne? Old unhappy far-off times and battles long ago. No need to go into that old fiction now, is there? Complaint withdrawn. Yes, ma’am.

Lad reinstated with warning.

Sylvester walking straight, though with new thoughtful expression.

Davaar submits account to airline for sterling efforts, reputations, no lawsuits. Why airline pay no lawsuits? Is airline kidding? Davaar ceases to act for airline. Pillar wants to pay fee. Sorry, can’t charge Pillar. Parcel arrives for Davaar (from Pillar?): two huge brass cat bookends. Hideous. And you all hate lawyers.

[ 25 November 2001: Message edited by: Davaar ]

compressor stall
26th Nov 2001, 12:46
Places and names removed to protect the guilty.

Single engine charter with scruffy bloke and mangey old dog of his. No cage to speak of, but dog seems docile enough, so bloke keeps dog between his legs in the back row.

After landing and taxying in, being rather warm, door is popped on the aircraft to allow some airflow into the cabin. Dog jumps up, headbuts door and runs outside and starts biting tyres.

Dog gets bored with the tyre on that side and runs around the front of the a/c to the other side.

Dog never appears around the other side.

The aircraft is stopped, and the dog, neatly sliced into four bits is seen, now behind the aircraft.

Pilot starts to panic, wondering what scruffy ol'mate is going to do when he sees sliced pooch.

In the most ocker aussie voice, he strines "Ah well, didn't like the bloddy dog anyway" picked up one of the segments and turfed it into the long grass!

Capt Vegemite
26th Nov 2001, 12:50
"No Margaret I'm giving four and a half stars to Davaars Sylvester story"

29th Nov 2001, 13:21
Once, whilst working as a baggage handler, there was a snake in a box. In the same hold there was also a box containing 200 20-day-old chickens! I did wonder whether the snake was aware of the chicks, and whether it thought it was getting it's mid-flight meal!

The Bonk
2nd Dec 2001, 21:18
I used to work for a company that specialised in flying live animals- Livestock and General Cargo Ltd. Not too sure if it is still going.

Numerous incidents. One was with an BCAL Combi. Pedigree cows down the back all loaded up before pax got on board. I think there was a racehorse on board as well and the BCAL girls were trying to do a bit of PR all dolled up in riding gear (nice!) Little old lady sat at the back heard a moo. Asked hostess what it was and hosty joked, steak is on the menu and it certainly is fresh. What a scene that followed.....nothing would keep her on the flight, so off she went.

Polo ponies to Nigeria from Montevedeo (GAS Air)....constructing the pens outside with ponies inside and the heavens opened. Due to strict regulations the pens have to keep all the horse pi$$ in....so also keeps rainwater in (just like a kiddies swimming pool!). Front enders looking to push off sharpish....combined with me being dull, didn't think twice about the 8 or so pens down the back. I was right down the @rse end when she rotated. I didn't know who needed drugging the most......ponies or the pilots!! It was just like a Hollywood set with a tidal wave of diluted urine coming your way! Hmmmh....I learnt about CofG from that!

Last one, Lufthansa with extremely heavy Bull destined for S.Africa......747, nose up....on loading freight and Bull makes a bid for freedom. The Bull won until it realised it couldn't fly unassisted as it charged out the nose!

3rd Dec 2001, 01:00
Also long ago and far away.

Dramatis Personae:

The King in Council: Not Telling, aka a public servant.
A: An airline, operating freight aircraft that carry 86 head plus feet and digestive systems) of cattle on the one haul.
The Foreigner: A man (from a land far away) operating a freight aircraft that would carry 100 head (plus feet and digestive systems) of cattle on the one haul.
The Regulator: A regulatory agency.
The Buyers: People, in other lands far away, with lots of money and few cattle.
Cowboys: People with lots of cattle and no money (so they said).
Prairieboy: A Cowboy, acting undercover.

Buyers eager to buy cattle. Cattle valuable export. Buyers want cattle in lots of 100 head (plus etc). Cowboys glad to oblige. SOP. Cowboys knew The Foreigner. Cowboys ask A, who tells them, Yes 86, No 100. Freight rate per pound avoirdupois same thing, so what your complaint? Hot damn! Cowboys ask The Foreigner, who tells them, Yes 100. Yippee-ai-ay. Go git ‘em. The Foreigner applies for permit. Turned down by The Regulator. National Policy. The Foreigner appeals to Not Telling. Not Telling considers the evidence, allows the appeal. Everyone happy, most of them. That's how it worked.

One day, The Foreigner turned down again. Oh Phooey! he said, inwardly. So said the Cowboys,inwardly. Oh Phooey times two. Let them Phooey Themselves, said The Foreigner and the Cowboys, inwardly. Do it their way. If A want carry 86 head (plus feet and digestive systems)(reason for mentioning the add-ons; just wait) let it be so; let A carry 86 head.

Great astonishment! Then Prairieboy calls Not Telling by telephone. Hey fella! This Prairieboy, undercover Cowboy, mah job. We gonna deliver 86 head (plus feet and digestive systems) of cattle at beautiful new airport for A to haul a long long way over ocean and desert (freight rate per pound avoirdupois same thing, so what my complaint? Fella! No complaint). 86 head (plus feet and digestive systems) of cattle arrive airport Wednesday for flight same day. Neat and prompt. Count on it. Okay?

Jes’ wohn thang, says Prairieboy, valuable cattle. Valuable trade. Want those 86 head (plus feet and digestive systems) of cattle to cross ocean and desert and arrive in good condition, happy and well-fed. So, week before flight we gonna feed them real good (Prairieboy weak on adverb from adjective, but so what?). With wet grass. Lush fodder. Mebbe some clover. Balance the diet. All they can hold. We gonna fix Time Magazine, Newsweek, US News, CBC, CTV, Press, TV, Radio at airport good time arrival 86 head (plus feet and digestive systems) of cattle. Y’all did say 86 head (plus feet and digestive systems) of cattle? Wanna be sure for sartin we got it right. Yeah. 86. Tell A: Have a great flight. Hey fella? Does A carry a shovel on-flight?

Not Telling and staff immediately cancel all appointments for Wednesday, arrange car pooling to airport for delivery. Spirit of scientific inquiry. Wouldn’t miss it. Maybe tell A? Maybe tell The Regulator? Nah! Oh Well, maybe. Tell A. Tell The Regulator. A withdraws application. The Regulator issues permit to The Foreigner. The Foreigner carries the 100, but not so well fed.

And that, dear Children, is how I met your Grandmamma.

[ 02 December 2001: Message edited by: Davaar ]

4th Dec 2001, 08:55
Back in the '70s a photo appeared on the cover of a major internationl magazine, of a famous actress holding a baby seal, that, according to the hype, she'd just rescued from a savage seal hunter. The baby seal looked quite adorable, what with it's great sad eyes and all, but the whole thing was something less than it seemed.
The famous actress arrived in ZV in a Swiss registered Falcon 10. They were to spend the night there, and the following day depart for BX, where the famous actress would board a waiting chopper for a flight to the seal herds so she could observe the savage slaughter for herself.
The Falcon crew contacted a local bush outfit, WS, for info on the BX runway. At that time, BX sported an ADF approach to a 3500 X 100 ft gravel runway, and the runway conditions were 60% bare and dry, 40% snow and ice patches, mostly at the ends. Braking action ok for a DC-3.
The next morning dawned clear and bright. WS 711, a DC-3 freighter, left ZV and arrived BX on sched. The wind was straight down the runway at about 20 kt, so there was no problem bringing the aircraft to a stop. Shortly before departure of WS 710, the Falcon bearing the famous actress arrived overhead, and after a cautious circuit, landed. You'll have to take my word for it that every available inch of that runway was used before that aircraft came to a stop.
The famous actress deplaned, and after a short photo session, made to mount her chariot to be flown to where the seals were being slaughtered by the wild eyed savages.
In a brief aside, she inquired where she would "faire pipi" if the urge overcame her while she was "on the ice." She was informed that she would have to squat behind the nearest iceberg, as bathroom facilities are rare on the Labrador Sea ice. Well! This would never do, and the famous actress dug in her dainty heels and refused to board the chopper until suitable bathroom facilities could be found, an impossible task.
The WS ground agent - a smart man like all WS employees - turned to his brother the WS ticket agent, WS being a firm believer in nepotism, and asked him if he still had that stuffed white coat hanging around at home. It seems that the ticket agent had come across a stuffed baby seal on a trip somewhere, and thought it would look good in front of his fireplace. Said baby seal was indeed still around, and the ticket agent departed, to return shortly with the trophy.
The taxidermist had done a fine job on the little creature, down to his little whiskers and great sad eyes. The famous actress, along with her photographers, were overjoyed. No need to fly out to the Labrador Sea, no need to squat behind a cold iceberg, risking frostbite to her dainty derriere, the solution was right here. Find some ice, and take some pix. Finding ice in BX in March not a problem, so clutching the seal the famous actress and her entourage hiked down the road a short distance to a spot called locally l'anse aux dunes. In a way, the actress had come full circle, since one of her countrymen, Jacques Cartier, had named that exact spot Blanc Sablon in 1534, but I digress. The fact that in l'anse aux dunes there was no northern ice, just local bay ice, meant not a whit, for as it is said, "the public don't know s**t," and they would never be able to tell it from the pic.
The pictures of the famous actress and her baby seal were duly taken, after which she remounted her Falcon and left, never to return. A few weeks later the photo appeared on the cover of a famous international magazine, and it was great. The little whiskers, the great sad eyes - not hers, the seal's - and all that bay err..Northern ice. From that day to this, the public still thinks the pics were of the famous actress holding a real baby seal.
I sometimes wonder about her commitment to animal rights, though. I hear she later cut the nuts off her neighbours donkey, in a fit of pique. :D

6th Dec 2001, 11:10
Well, a story about an animal that did not fly. Not as per scheduled any way. The cargo DC-8 was expected in Toronto by a fair sized group of journos as there was supposed to be a Rhinocerus on board. It was from FRA and being shipped for amorous purposes with a lady Rhino in Canada. Great disappointment for thepress when it turned up missing. Explanations were demanded and it turned out that the Skipper had got a look at the cage and thought it too flimsy. In addition when he asked where the handler was he was assured that the beast was tranquilised within an inch of its life and would be no problem, therefore a handler was not needed.
Well what do we do if we have an unscheduled landing and it wakes up? No great answers from the company, ergo "Not bloody likely, gettitoff" It arrived the next day with a proper cage and a handler.