A remarkable video of a hawk flying around, picking up a snake, then dropping onto a family barbeque has gone viral since it was released Tuesday morning.
Melbourne radio station 3AW published the video on YouTube Wednesday morning, although did apply some caution by asking readers to “be the judge” of whether or not the video was a spoof.
The clip was originally uploaded on Monday by a YouTube user going by the name of Douglas Wong, who has no other videos under his name.
“So funny … bird dropped snake on my uncle last weekend,” the description reads.
However, professional animators and bird experts alike are adamant the video is a fake.
Emma Goldstone, from Melbourne creative agency Jumbla, said there’s something fishy about the short clip.
“The professional consensus seems to be that, no, it’s not real,” she said.
“The snake is massive in the last shot, but when the bird supposedly picks it up, you can’t even see it. The camera work is too good. Why would a snake be hanging out in short grass in winter?”
Sean Dooley, the editor of Australian Birdlife magazine, also believes the video is a spoof.
He said there are sea eagles located around Port Phillip Bay, but they are “exceptionally rare” along the Yarra.
“They rarely take snakes and I would be surprised that a young bird would have that skill,” he said.
“Even more damning is that the silver gull in the foreground does not move an inch as the eagle approaches to catch the snake or when it drops it. There is no way a gull wouldn’t react to a huge predator swooping in like that.”
In July, it was revealed Melbourne production studio The Woolshed Company was behind a number of viral videos that had tricked news agencies worldwide.
Among the videos were depictions of a fake lighting strike and a shark attack.