Equines & Drones - some observationsHome

Little has been recorded about the interaction beween Horses and Drones – the Civil Aviation Authority who regulate all UK airspace apparently has nothing to say! Anyone who owns, rides or has been around horses for any length of time will know that like humans, they are individuals. Some are totaly nuke-proof whilst others will freak out at the sight of a fluttering crisp packet or a small puddle. Unlike humans however, when confronted with something they don't like their reaction is one of flight. When free to move say, in a field or paddock this usually does not represent a problem. Different though when ridden!
These observations are not intended to be authoratative or comprehensive, simply a brief initial exploration of how some particular horses when out at grass reacted to (using CAA preferred parlance a Small Unmanned Aircraft (SUA), in this case a DJI Phantom 2 weighing in at less than 1.5 kg and approximately 350mm across. The location of the filming was Upton Pyne Equestrian Centre located a few miles outside Exeter and was carried out by kind permission of Ellie and Stewart Wass. The filming site is shown in the following image.
Upton Pyne Equestrian Centre paddocks

Upton Pyne Equestrian Centre Paddocks

The ground camera can just be seen about one third down from the top near the right hand edge which was also the launch and recovery point for the SUA.  The SUA was flown generally in the paddock on the right containing the ground camera with some incursions into the central pathway extending upwards from the bottom. The closest approach to the horses made by the SUA was about 10M from the front and side.