Was riding the MUP on my commute this morning. About 15 minutes before dawn. Had my headlight on, in my own quiet little world keeping an eye out for any unlikely early joggers or dog walkers or the occasional early waking rabbits.
I was going about 15 mph on a straight section. All of a sudden, I see something dark come out of the field directly at me on the left, I have enough time to recognize it as a bird but not what kind. Maybe a mourning dove. It misses my left leg, flies though the triangle of the bike, hits my water bottle and knocks it half out of the cage, bounces off the inside of my right leg and goes into the corn field on the right side.
Scared the bajeepers out of me! I let out what I hope was a manly squeal if there was anyone around to hear it. If it would have landed in my lap or hit my helmet, I would have crashed for sure just from freaking out! I was so freaked, I didn't even see if he was ok. Everything he hit was soft or giving, so he probably ended up just startled like me.
I am always careful of rabbits and squirrels as they are naturally spastic. Have had to avoid a couple of turtles and one snake. I have even had to slow for a few deer. But, I have never had even a remotely close encounter with a bird before. They always fly away from me. I thought maybe we had an understanding. I guess we don't. lol