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Seahawks fan keeps cool when raptor mascot goes rogue, perches on his head

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Sports teams have certain clothing styles and accessories associated with them, and the same could be said for the fans of any given sport. Usually, a fan doesn’t wear a mascot on their head, though.

During the Thursday night football game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Los Angeles Rams, a bizarre turn of events occurred: the mascot of the Seahawks, a live hawk, flew away from its trained route, ignored its handler, and landed on a fan up in the stadium seating, reported Mediaite.

The Augur Hawk, named Taima, usually flies out of the Seahawks tunnel just prior to the game, and is trained to ignore the sights and sounds and do a loop before returning to its handler, David Knutson. Unfortunately for the fan, Taima had a change of heart and chose his poor head as a perch.

Taima proceeded to scratch the fan’s scalp while flapping her wings, which was almost certainly a painful experience. Amazingly, neither the fan nor the bird was reportedly harmed, which was certainly a lucky break for the fan, given that Taima’s talons are not made for massages, and could very easily have ruined an eye or caused other serious harm.

The fan’s surprisingly calm, controlled demeanor during the incident may well have prevented the bird from panicking and scratching him more severely.


“We’ve got a runaway!” exclaimed Fox commentator Joe Buck, who then suggested that someone “Get that guy season tickets!”

“Get him a helmet!” Troy Aikman commented.

This is not the first time Taima has gotten away from her handler and pulled a stunt involving a fan. In 2014, she landed on a fan’s head just prior to the Seahawk’s game against the New York Giants. It should be noted, however, that the overwhelming majority of her long history with the Seahawks has gone according to plan since her arrival with the team in June of 2005.

Augur Hawks, also called Augur Buzzards or Buteo Hawks, are a bird of prey native to Africa. The species is noted for its beautiful adult plumage of black along the back, white along the underside, and a colorful orange-red tail. It is considered large for a bird (Taima’s wingspan is approximately 4.5 feet, according to her official website), and its talons are built for grabbing and tearing apart small animals unfortunate enough to catch its attention, and sometimes even prey as large as a chicken or a hare.

At the time of writing, there is no word on whether or not the unidentified fan received the suggested season tickets.


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