LONDON – Whenever animals are used in shows, speeches, or – as in this case – to mark the inauguration of a mosque, there’s the potential for something to go badly wrong.

This is something Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan discovered Friday, when he attempted to release a group of birds to mark the opening of a new mosque in Rize – and ended up having a head-on collision with a partridge.

Things got off to a shaky start when the birds proved reluctant to take part in the ceremony.

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The President tried to use an umbrella for encouragement, but didn’t have much luck.

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Turkish President headbutted by partridge at mosque opening