Florida pelican bites Maryland asshole after getting tackled

by

comment
A Florida pelican bit a Maryland man's face after being tackled in Key West last week.

The Baltimore Sun reports the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is investigating Hunter Hardesty after he posted a video of himself on Facebook attacking the federally protected brown pelican.



The Monroe County Sheriff's Office says the FWC informed Sheriff Rick Ramsay Monday that the agency is in the process of filing two criminal charges against Hardesty for animal cruelty and molestation of a protected species.

The video shows the Maryland man luring the pelican to the edge of the harbor with what looks like a fish and then jumping into the water on top of the bird.



Onlookers laugh as Hardesty holds on to the stunned pelican with both hands, while a woman tells him she's going to call the authorities if he doesn't get out of the water.

The pelican seizes it chance and slaps a distracted Hardesty with its wing. The bird then lunges at the man and bites Hardesty's face with its beak before flapping away.

SCREENCAP VIA HUNTER HARDESTY/FACEBOOK
Hardesty later posted on Facebook in the video's comments about the pelican, saying "Next time ima eat him for dinner!! Wonder what they taste like."

screen_shot_2019-03-11_at_10.48.52_am.png

Orlando Weekly reached out to Hardesty for a comment but did not hear back immediately.

FWC spokesperson Rob Klepper says the state agency is taking Hardesty's video "seriously."

"Our law enforcement division is investigating the incident for possible criminal violations," Klepper says in a statement.

The Monroe County Sheriff's Office says there are other pictures and videos of Hardesty allegedly holding a Key deer, which is also a federal protected animal. 

"I shared the anger of those who contacted me regarding this video," Sheriff Ramsay says in a statement. "This type of behavior – the abuse of animals – will not be tolerated on my watch and I know our law enforcement partners at the FWC and at the federal level share that mindset."

Stay on top of Orlando news and views. Sign up for our weekly Headlines newsletter.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at feedback@orlandoweekly.com.

Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.