BYU journalism student attacked by resident hawk, captures incident on video

Posted at 9:53 PM, May 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-26 17:20:26-04

UPDATE: Crews have created a walkway around the area where the hawks have been attacking students and faculty on BYU's campus.

PROVO, Utah -- Pedestrians beware. A pair of hawks nesting on Brigham Young University’s campus are taking on students.

"It was possible to be hit at any time," said Madison Coburn, a BYU Broadcast Journalism student who spent an afternoon stalking the hawks, hoping to get an attack on video.

After hours of trying, she packed up here gear, but it was just the beginning.

"My breathing is a little heavy," said Coburn of the moment she decided to tempt fate and walk the path under the hawk's nest with her cellphone camera rolling. A flash of feathers, a short scream, and the cellphone video goes shaky.

Needless to say, it worked, one of the hawks grazing Coburn's head.

"I think it needs to be out that this is kind of a danger," Coburn said.

It is out there.

There's a sign at the end of the sidewalk a few feet short of the Elm tree holding the nest. Besides a warning, it notes the danger will likely pass sometime in June with Mama and Papa Cooper's hawk fly off with their hatchlings.

"It'd be interesting to have a hawk come on your head wouldn't it," said Paul Evans, a Life Sciences professor at BYU.

Evans lives near campus and says the hawks are common.

"It's something to celebrate and to enjoy having it around," he said.