Headbanging peacocks wreck new car

A COUPLE are devastated after their new £17,000 car was wrecked by headbanging PEACOCKS at an animal park.David and Rachel Burton said their one-year-old Renault Laguna convertible had been battered, dented and covered in blood by the crazed birds.

A COUPLE are devastated after their new £17,000 car was wrecked by headbanging PEACOCKS at an animal park.

David and Rachel Burton said their one-year-old Renault Megane convertible had been battered, dented and covered in blood by the crazed birds.

The peacocks saw red when they spotted their reflections in the motor - and lashed out because they thought they were being attacked.

Rachel said she broke down and wept when she saw the damage.

The Burtons are now being forced to get a total paint respray costing £2,700 after the birds went wild.

Rachel, of Toftwood, near Dereham, Norfolk, said: “It's my pride and joy - I was absolutely devastated.

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"People can't believe a peacock can cause so much damage."

The mum-of-two added: "I absolutely sobbed my heart out when I got back and for the park to be so insensitive rubs salt in the wound.”

The attack happened at the former Great Witchingham Animal Park, now rare breed farm The Animal Ark, where they used to take their children as tots.

David said: “When we came out we saw a couple of people trying to shoo peacocks away from our car.

"The peacocks had been attacking our car and it was absolutely wrecked.

“The car was covered in blood from where they had been banging their heads against it.

"Scratches from where they were pecking it, it had been ruined. It was a brutal blow.

“Peacocks attack when they see their reflection in dark cars. But there were no warning signs - just the general disclaimers you see in multi-storeys saying the management accepts no responsibility for damage."

He added: “We parked where we were supposed to.

"We hadn't gone through fences or turnstiles or anything else to suggest animals may be about.

"How were we supposed to know this could happen? The signs gave no indication we were putting our car in extra danger.

“There were lots of other cars there too. I spoke to the owner who said it wasn't their fault and they couldn't do anything about it.

“I can deal with the damage, it's not about the money. But what if next time a child is nearby or in the car?

"Someone could be seriously hurt and I'd be mortified.”

The Laguna has now been booked into a repair centre for a complete respray which will cost the insurance company £2,700.

The Burtons will have to shell out a £250 excess fee.

Steve Bealey, owner of The Animal Ark, said: “Peacocks can be very territorial. We're sorry this has happened and it is the first time something like this has.

“This is a wildlife park. In the countryside there's not much of a distinction between grounds.

"The peacocks fly over the fence and in this case saw their reflections in the car.

“We have general signs saying we're not liable for damage and I think that's enough. I've told the insurance company we have disclaimers too."

He stressed: “I'm aware only one peacock did it, which is now being kept in an aviary.

"It's sad as it likes to roam around.

"The peacock is fine. They're very thick-skinned.”

A peacock called Ron seriously battered a “peacock blue” Lexus in the grounds of a Somerset stately home when it tried to mate with the up-market motor last October.

Owner Sir Benjamin Slade had to ban the colour car from Maunsel House, his sprawling 1300-acre estate, and he threatened to put the peacock on the sex offenders' register.

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