Disturbing moment cockatoo intentionally pushes pot plants off an apartment balcony onto the footpath – endangering pedestrians

  • Sulphur-crested cockatoo filmed hurling pot plants from a high storey balcony
  • Residents, workers and bystanders in Melbourne CBD laneway are used to birds
  • Council urged residents to stop feeding birds and remove plants from balconies

Footage has emerged of a cocky resident wrecking havoc by ‘wilfully’ dropping pot plants from a balcony onto a busy CBD laneway.

City of Melbourne Council issued a public warning after a sulphur-crested cockatoo was filmed picking up the plants on an apartment balcony and then dropping them onto the footpath – and endangered pedestrians – below.

The video filmed on Monday shows the cheeky bird several storeys up an apartment building in Flinders Lane, gleefully dropping the plants as bemused bystanders watched on.

A construction worker kept a vigilant eye on the avian aerial bomber.

‘Just be careful,’ a man is heard warning bystanders.

‘He’s not happy. Here comes another one!’ 

A man riding past on a mobility scooter was among those almost hit by the projectiles.

The apartment building was above an optometrist on the corner of Scott Alley, just a stone’s throw from busy Swanston Street. 

Video of the incident has attracted more than 1.5million online views since being shared by social media meme page Brown Cardigan.

Local residents and workers are used to the birds’ crazy antics.

‘It started happening during lockdown. I think it is quirky and funny,’ resident Jason told ABC Radio Melbourne.

‘There is nothing you can do about it. At the end of the day it is nature.’

Cafe manager Lucie Amulet added: ‘It happens every year. They mostly drop plants but also socks as well. I think it is fun.’

A man riding a mobility scooter (pictured) missed the flying projectiles by seconds

A man riding a mobility scooter (pictured) missed the flying projectiles by seconds

Western Sydney University animal ecology lab researcher John Martin was stunned after watching the video.

‘Wilfully throwing pot plants off a multi-storey balcony is a new observation – it is bizarre and fascinating,’ he said.

The viral clip also attracted hundreds of comments from amused viewers. 

‘Haha he’s looking down at everyone thinking ‘what are you gonna do? Call the cops?’ one wrote.

Another added: ‘I like how he looks down to inspect his handy work.’

Others pondered about the potential nightmare of lodging insurance claims.

‘I like to claim insurance for my car.. a cockatoo dropped a pot on my windshield,’ one woman quipped. 

City of Melbourne Council was made aware of the footage and has urged residents to remove pot plants and other sources of food from apartment balconies to stop attracting birds.

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An online viewer added:  ‘This is why you shouldn’t feed them. If you’re not there on time they get annoyed and start trashing the place.’

Sulphur-crested cockatoos are curious and highly intelligent birds who can be very numerous locally.

The species has become a pest in many urban areas, where it uses its beak to flip wheelie bins and destroy timber decking and panelling on buildings, according to the Australian Museum. 

Residents and workers in Flinders Lane (pictured) are used to projectiles from the cockatoos

Residents and workers in Flinders Lane (pictured) are used to projectiles from the cockatoos



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