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First Blood of the Magpie Season

By 23 August 2012 32

On the bike path parallel to Kurungai Drive, where Spence an Fraser meet.

A cowardly attack from the rear by an overprotective magpie, shocked the living daylights out of me. Got me on the cheek, right next to the ear.

Time for magpie protective measure me thinks.

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32 Responses to First Blood of the Magpie Season
#1
Sammy10:40 am, 23 Aug 12

cowardly attack

On the contrary, I think the magpie showed great courage in attacking something about a hundred times its size.

#2
gospeedygo10:46 am, 23 Aug 12

Sammy said :

cowardly attack

On the contrary, I think the magpie showed great courage in attacking something about a hundred times its size.

I dunno, the advantages of its small size, ability to fly, sneak up on you and possibly to take an eye out is pretty compelling in its favour I’d say. Next, Hulk vs Spiderman.

#3
colourful sydney rac10:47 am, 23 Aug 12

I thought I was going to get some attention from a magpie this morning, however I am pretty sure it saw the Collingwood scarf and knew I was on it’s side :)

#4
Thumper10:55 am, 23 Aug 12

Fantastic.

I love the cheeky little buggers.

#5
Stevian11:04 am, 23 Aug 12

Thumper said :

Fantastic.

I love the cheeky little buggers.

Will you still love them when they take your eye out?

#6
Chop7111:18 am, 23 Aug 12

I hate Collingwood

#7
joeyjojojuniorshabad11:20 am, 23 Aug 12

Ban magpies!

#8
Pitchka11:23 am, 23 Aug 12

Stevian said :

Thumper said :

Fantastic.

I love the cheeky little buggers.

Will you still love them when they take your eye out?

Im assuming the magpie would grab onto his face with both feet, then gauge it out?

Magpies rarely attack when you are looking directly at them, so iim not sure how it would achieve this.

#9
fernandof11:26 am, 23 Aug 12

Stevian said :

Thumper said :

Fantastic.

I love the cheeky little buggers.

Will you still love them when they take your eye out?

Do they actually aim to harm or just fly stupidly close to scare?
I’m asking because I’m a cyclist an need to think what kind of protection to start using. For example, would glasses be sufficient or should I think of a more tough eye protection?

#10
Thumper11:27 am, 23 Aug 12

Stevian said :

Thumper said :

Fantastic.

I love the cheeky little buggers.

Will you still love them when they take your eye out?

Yep.

#11
coffeeman11:50 am, 23 Aug 12

Time for a cull methinks ……..

;-)

#12
Snarky12:24 pm, 23 Aug 12

coffeeman said :

Time for a cull methinks ……..

;-)

I’m surprised no-one’s suggested compulsory registration so that miscreants can be hunted down and brought before the beak.

#13
troll-sniffer12:39 pm, 23 Aug 12

My local magpies were attacking anything that even looked like it was on two wheels. (Mr Gillespie probably trained them for the task). So, after the last swooping season when they quietened down a bit but would still screech and fly down as though to swoop, I started feeding them. Not much, just the leftover fat from bacon etc cut into insect sized slivers. No more swooping. And because I only feed them occasionally they don’t automatically hassle me, they just come over when I arrive home or depart, look at me quizzically and if I don’t produce the magic placcy bag they go back to hunting morsels in the grass.

#14
harvyk11:03 pm, 23 Aug 12

fernandof said :

Do they actually aim to harm or just fly stupidly close to scare?
I’m asking because I’m a cyclist an need to think what kind of protection to start using. For example, would glasses be sufficient or should I think of a more tough eye protection?

Most of the time they just fly stupidly close to scare… But every so often one will inflict some damage such as cuts and bruises. There are cases where a magpie has caused serious damage to someone (eg caused serious eye damage where the person has lost vision in that eye) but it’s pretty rare.

A set of sunglasses is probably not a bad idea, but ultimately the best solution is to simply find a way to go which doesn’t take you through their territory. Avoid open fields or grassed area’s, also keep an eye out for them sitting on high places such as lamp posts, that’s usually a good sign that one is about to have a go at you.

#15
Madam Cholet1:04 pm, 23 Aug 12

Just talking about the advent of swooping season this morning. I love watching the magpies gear up for this time of year – the beautiful warbling sounds that coincides with the slight upswing in daytime termps, and the building of relationships and nests. We have some that always nest in our tree at the front of our house and I make a point (probably stupidly), of ‘chatting’ with them when I am outside. They look like they are interested anyway!!

I must admit, I don’t like the swooping, but find that eye contact is a good strategy, unless of course you are attached from behind as I was – a warning swoop. The problem really comes for us if you take the dog out as they love to swwop him and he loves to chase them. Can get a bit hairy sometimes!!

I do think that some magpies should be made to rein in the amount of area they cover though – they can get a bit greedy! A few years ago there was one near us whose area spanned a busy road and more and he’d see you off up the hill for a few hundred metres! Anyway, it’s a short lived season and we should try to recognise it for what it is – the continuance of life.

#16
carnardly1:08 pm, 23 Aug 12

unless you want to look like a total goob, please don’t bother with the cable ties on your lids.

Just use that area as an opportunity to hone your sprint…. :-)

#17
poetix2:52 pm, 23 Aug 12

I spotted an echidna head cyclist the other day. It does show that there are things that make even a bike helmet look worse.

#18
johnboy2:53 pm, 23 Aug 12
#19
poetix2:58 pm, 23 Aug 12

johnboy said :

Surely this would fix it?

http://historyinculture.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/cleo_the_cat-tailwags.jpg

Dare you!

#20
basketcase3:23 pm, 23 Aug 12
#21
poetix5:06 pm, 23 Aug 12
#22
Antagonist5:11 pm, 23 Aug 12

Sammy said :

cowardly attack

On the contrary, I think the magpie showed great courage in attacking something about a hundred times its size.

The magpie is a sucker-punching little b!tch. Rego for magpies and speed camera’s could have prevented this.

#23
Pork Hunt5:34 pm, 23 Aug 12

I am a fan of the cable tied bike helmet. Anything that gets those modern day pterodactyls further away from my scone has to be a good thing…

#24
Jivrashia8:05 pm, 23 Aug 12

Got me on the cheek, right next to the ear.
Time for magpie protective measure me thinks.

HTFU and grow some SIDEBURNS.

#25
breda10:05 pm, 23 Aug 12

+1 for throwing a few meat scraps to the locals – they become lifelong friends. Mine wander across the back verandah and tapon the back door if they sense that I’m holding out on them.

Not much use for commuters, though. I was swooped walking on Kings Ave towards PH not long after I came here, delivering some folders to the Minister’s office. It was very scary indeed, and this one’s territory was several hundred metres along King’s Ave. Luckily, the folders provided a bit of protection.

And yes, I recall a story in the CT a few years ago where a maggie in deepest suburbia took out a small child’s eye. Apparently this bird was near a shopping centre and there had been numerous complaints to the ACT Govt about its aggressive behaviour, but as with dangerous trees, they were in the thrall of nutty environmentalists and said that Nature was more important than human safety.

I am fond of my local maggies, but they are far from endangered and most of them are not a danger to us. Why they won’t remove the odd one that is a serious menace is hard to comprehend.

#26
bundah10:55 pm, 23 Aug 12

harvyk1 said :

fernandof said :

Do they actually aim to harm or just fly stupidly close to scare?
I’m asking because I’m a cyclist an need to think what kind of protection to start using. For example, would glasses be sufficient or should I think of a more tough eye protection?

Most of the time they just fly stupidly close to scare… But every so often one will inflict some damage such as cuts and bruises. There are cases where a magpie has caused serious damage to someone (eg caused serious eye damage where the person has lost vision in that eye) but it’s pretty rare.

A set of sunglasses is probably not a bad idea, but ultimately the best solution is to simply find a way to go which doesn’t take you through their territory. Avoid open fields or grassed area’s, also keep an eye out for them sitting on high places such as lamp posts, that’s usually a good sign that one is about to have a go at you.

Of course there are always extraordinary cases eg. the killer magpie!
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/swooping-magpie-blamed-for-death-of-ipswich-boy-who-was-hit-by-a-car/story-e6freoof-1225916411678

#27
Antagonist11:32 pm, 23 Aug 12

troll-sniffer said :

I started feeding them. Not much, just the leftover fat from bacon etc cut into insect sized slivers.

If you are going to feed them (as I occasionally do myself) please use lean meat. It better mimics their natural foods.

#28
eily9:28 am, 24 Aug 12

50 plus magpies flying into backyard for feed: impressive
One maggie following into kitchen: messy

#29
neanderthalsis9:58 am, 24 Aug 12

Pork Hunt said :

I am a fan of the cable tied bike helmet. Anything that gets those modern day pterodactyls further away from my scone has to be a good thing…

But the CSIRO have shown that cable ties do nothing except make you look like a twat:

http://the-riotact.com/what-magpies-swoop/14792

#30
6matt910:33 am, 24 Aug 12

Thumper said :

Fantastic.

I love the cheeky little buggers.

I love them too. And I had some really scary swooping incidents as a kid… picked ear… clawed head… terrorised countless times. But I still think they are awesome. I’d swoop people too (if I could fly).

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