Eagles on the golf course are usually a good thing, unless they are killing baby impalas and holding up play.
There’s nothing worse than being held up while playing a round of golf. Most of the time, slow groups are the main cause of backups out on the course, and you can always play through if the groups ahead allow you to do so.
I highly doubt this martial eagle was going to let anyone come on through after it swooped down to claim the baby impala for dinner. All the golfers in the fairway could do was watch in awe as the massive bird stood atop the small deer shortly after it took it down.
This all went down at Skukuza Golf Club in South Africa, which is no stranger to wildlife encounters. The golf course is located in Kruger National Park, which is home to lions, tigers, cheetahs, hyenas, and plenty of other animals that often walk the fairways of the grounds (usually at night).
If you ask me, golf is already hard enough on its own without having to worry about dangerous wildlife lurking nearby. When I’m reading my birdie putt on the green, all I want on my mind is line and speed, not life and death.
And unfortunately for the baby impala that was wandering along at the Skukuza Golf Club, it was a matter of life and death. The small deer likely never saw the Martial eagle coming, whereas the big bird (with a wingspan of around eight feet) probably saw the impala from miles away.
Martial eagles are very opportunistic hunters and usually aren’t too picky about what they’ll hunt. They’ve even been known to go after livestock, so there’s really not an animal that’s off the menu for the large bird (that’s actually listed on the endangered list).
One thing that certainly was on the menu was this poor little impala, who got taken down just off to the side of one of the fairways at the golf course.
You can see the footage of the golfers reacting to the National Geographic scene playing out right in front of them: