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Australians in Head-Crazed Dilemmas Over Swooping Attacks From Sneaky Magpies

Sep 07, 2016 06:00 PM EDT
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Magpie
The long magpie season has began early since June and it will be a very long swooping season as these birds guard their nests over residents' heads and eyes.
(Photo : Hughesdarren/Wikimedia Commons)

Winter is now over for the Australian folks. Snow won't be falling anytime soon, but watch out for the swooping magpies overhead, especially their claws.

According to a Monday news from The Herald, a Rutherford resident named Lincoln Wright got an eye blow while riding home from work along Aberglasslyn Road. The second attack, the magpie scratched behind his left ear.

In Queensland, 119 swoops have been recorded on the website magpiealert.com, marking the city with the most number of reported magpie attack, reports The Courier Mail.

Two people have been attacked by the "sneaky bird" at the South Bank boardwalk in Brisbane. While from Daily Mail, Reddit user local resident shared in the social media about his dilemma.

"I got chased away from my street and down a block on my bike the other day coz [sic] of these..." Reddit user, konnen23 said. TheFlyingCheeseMan, another Reddit user even recommended a "magpie cull", calling for others to support the movement.

Despite disdain people felt over the swooping incidences, they are quick to defend the aggressive magpies. Reddit user crumpethead said, "I've always fed them (not too much) and they form a real bond with you."

Mount Keira artist and magpie enthusiast, Nicole Grimm-Hewitt has befriended the many birds seeing them to be "really friendly and family oriented" and also brave, posted in another report.

Lawrence Orel of National Parks and Wildlife Service also disagreed with the culling of the magpies, saying that he understood that the birds are protecting their young but felt that authorities should cut back trees known for nesting locations as magpies are territorial birds, especially the males, which swoop the most because the common area for the nest site is a tall tree in an open space.

"Magpies only attack when there are chicks in the nest, so if there are going to be more chicks, there are going to be more attacks," Prof. Darryl Jones, behavioral ecologist of Griffith University told The Courier Mail.

According to Jones, this year, magpies started nesting in July, six to eight weeks earlier than their normal nesting season in August. Because of this, Australians need to expect more magpies swooping down their way as these birds will give birth to one additional lot chicks.

Read:
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Alert! Northern Spotted Owl Added to California's Endangered Species List

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