Skeet Shooters Clash With Shoppers Over Delivery Drones

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A delivery drone similar to the ones being targeted on Blacktip Island. (photo by X-Javier)

 

The Blacktip Island Trap and Skeet Club’s recent use of online delivery drones as targets has sparked a bitter feud with island shoppers.

“Clay pigeons get pricey, when we can get them,” club president B.C. Flote said. “We lucked onto this, though, and it’s been a blast.

“First time was a mistake. Ol’ Doc Plank saw one of those things coming in low over the range, thought it was part of the sporting clay session, and blew it to bejesus. From there we were off and running.”

Customers awaiting drone deliveries on the isolated Caribbean island are not amused.

“It’s hard enough to get supplies on Blacktip,” resident Corry Anders said. “These drones were a godsend. Now our stuff’s getting blown away left and right. What is wrong with these people?”

Conservationists are up in arms as well.

“They’re blazing away at anything that flies – frigate birds, boobies, ospreys, even a flamingo,” said Waterfowl Warrior spokesperson Harry Pickett. “These are protected species, and they’re being blown to smithereens.”

Club members, however, are enthusiastic.

“It’s brilliant,” shooter Lee Helm said. “You order some knickknack online, prang it before it can land, then decline payment for non-delivery. You have to wait four to six business days for a target, but it’s free.”

“The coast is eat-up with sport shooters,” Flote said. “Some folks are even anchoring offshore in skiffs, or bobbing in scuba gear to get first crack at drones flying low under the radar. Right now, Blacktip Island has a tighter air defense system than North Korea.

“And the so-called flamingo incident was actually a delivery of pink feather boas,” Flote said. “No harm done there. We tell our folks, ‘if it’s flapping, let it pass,’ and they generally comply.”

Island shoppers like Anders, however, angered by lost deliveries, have launched a grassroots response aimed at ensuring the safe arrival of their goods.

“We’re bombarding the shooting blinds,” Anders said. “Hunting the hunters. As soon as a shooter raises a gun, we pelt them with coconuts. It’s crude, but effective. This would have been a bleak Christmas if it weren’t for our coconut barrages. They can’t shoot if they’re unconscious on the sand.

“It’s an all-for-one, united-we-stand situation. The goods you save may be your own.”

Island shooting enthusiasts have responded by donning bicycle helmets and wrapping themselves in beach towels for protection.

“It’s become a real cat-and-mouse game,” Flote said, “with us trying to get a clean shot and the shoppers trying to whack us. It takes the sport to a whole new level that I think benefits both sides.”

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