Family 'living in fear' after 'Hitchcock pheasant' begins terror campaign
A family in Shropshire said they are "living in fear" after a pheasant began terrorising their home in attacks reminiscent of the creatures in Alfred Hitchcock's horror classic The Birds.Sally-Ann Hudson, 44, said she is unable to step outside her property without being pecked at by the vicious bird which lies in wait every day.
The cock pheasant has launched several unprovoked attacks on Ms Hudson and her elderly parents Ann, 77, and Ben, 79, and even chases their car down the street.
The 2ft-tall bird – nicknamed Phil – lurks around from morning until night and swoops at the family as they come and go from their detached country home in Wentnor, Shrops.
Phil can regularly be seen headbutting the windows to the family's living room and pecking at the windscreen of Ms Hudson's Ford Ka as it drives down the street.
The attacks have become so bad that she is scared of leaving home without gloves and a badminton racquet to fend off the pheasant.
She has been stalked by the bird for the past four months – but is baffled as to why he is only targeting her family in the entire village.
Ms Hudson said Phil reminds her of something from Alfred Hitchock's horror classic "The Birds".
Ms Hudson, a medical secretary, said: "At first we didn't really notice him, but then we began to realise he was not like other pheasants. He would stare at us through the windows. Whichever window we looked out of, there he was.
"Sometimes he would jump up on the windowsill for a better view.
"Sometimes I go from one room into another, and he will run round the outside of the house following my movements.
"He even tries to get into the house – it's like something from a Hitchock film.
"He wakes me up every morning angrily headbutting the French windows downstairs.
"Often when we get in the car, he will appear from nowhere and either jump on the car or start pecking it.
"He runs alongside as we drive away, pecking and headbutting the wheels.
"One day this week he chased my car as usual, running alongside for a good 100 yards.
"I then sped up to try and outrun him, but he kept pace, finally taking to the air and flying behind the car in pursuit.
"He gave up as we left the village. We thought we had lost him, but no, by the time I returned home he was back outside the house cackling again."
Mrs Hudson said she has recently started giving Phil food in an effort to get on his good side.
She added: "There are no hen pheasants here, not much food, in fact nothing to keep him here. Yet he never strays far away.
"A couple of times in the last two weeks I have tried to befriend him, feeding him crumbs of corn bread, which he loves.
"But he has no gratitude though, and is always ready to attack.
"I have never encountered a pheasant like him and am quite sure this is not normal pheasant behaviour.
"They are normally just rather dopey birds – but this one is a complete nutter."
Paul North, from the World Pheasant Association said the bird was displaying territorial behaviour during mating season.
He said: "He obviously sees her as a rival male – pheasant's are very territorial."