Two “large, all dark” birds were sighted soaring at 27,000 feet over Birmingham at 4:20 CST on 15 August 1981 by Lt./JG Allen Smith, a Navy pilot and former biology student at Jacksonville State University.
Smith said he spotted the birds directly across from, or slightly below, his aircraft and estimated they were less than a mile away and were soaring in circles about 50 to 100 feet apart. Smith immediately checked, then rechecked, his altimeter and recorded the time and location. Conservatively, he said the birds could not have been below 26,000 feet. He could not distinguish what species they were, only that they were “large” and “all dark,” but any species by this general description in the Birmingham area would in all probability be vultures or eagles.
Author: C. W. Summerour
Volume Number: 30 Year Published: 1983
Issue Number: 1-2
Page Number: 8
Link to article: http://birdlife.aosbirds.org/1983/Vol 30 No 1, 2_1983_p8-10.pdf
Link to the full issue of BirdLife: http://birdlife.aosbirds.org/1983/Vol 30 No 1, 2_1983.pdf