What to Know About Cassowaries, the Bird That Can Shred a Man 'Like a Velociraptor'

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"Can you send an ambulance? I'm bleeding to death."

What prompted such a desperate call to 911? It was a vicious physical attack by a cassowary, which is said to be the most dangerous bird in the world.

Marvin Hajos, 75, of Gainesville, Florida, was keeping a cassowary as a pet on his farm when he was attacked by the flightless bird know for its dagger-like claws

Somehow, Hajos managed to place a call to his friend in addition to 911. 

"He sounded really frantic on the phone," the friend told a dispatcher in his own emergency call. "All he said was, 'Send an ambulance. Send an ambulance. Send an ambulance.'"

But it was too late — Hajos died of his injuries. 

Zookeeper Debbie Mogensen at the Natural Bridge Zoo in Virginia knows a thing or two about working with cassowaries.

"The main thing you worry about is their feet, their most deadly weapon," she told Inside Edition.

Cassowaries don't bite; instead they use their claws, which can grow up to 4 inches long. 

"It's more like running at you and kicking you and jumping at you with with those feet," said Mogensen . "Like a velociraptor, they're going shred you pretty quick."

Wildlife expert Jarod Miller said that likely one small mistake killed Hajos.

"It's a situation where a little slip-up like a trip and fall definitely gave that large bird an advantage," Miller said.


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