A KEEN Kilcreggan plane-spotter captured a rather unusual sight in the skies above the village last week.

Mike McLean, who works in the aviation industry, managed to snap pictures of a V-22 Osprey, a hybrid helicopter used by the US Air Force and Marine Corps, as it flew low over the area on Thursday, July 2.

Designed by Bell Boeing and costing around $70 million, the futuristic-looking chopper is a multi-role combat aircraft which uses tiltrotor technology to combine the vertical performance of a helicopter with the speed and range of a fixed-wing aircraft.

Four-hundred V-22s have been built since its introduction in the 1980s and each aircraft has both vertical take-off and landing (VTOL), and short take-off and landing (STOL) capabilities.

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It is designed to combine the functionality of a conventional helicopter with the long-range, high-speed cruise performance of a turboprop aircraft.

Mike, who noticed the big bird was on its way over Kilcreggan after checking a flight tracker website, told the Advertiser: “The only reason I got the pictures was because I knew it was coming.

“It was going about 250 knots and flying at about 125 feet right on the coastline, right on the limits of what they are allowed to do.

“It was impressive. It has a very unique noise – nothing else sounds like it.”

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