Mag­gies swoop in dur­ing peak pe­riod

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Opinion -

PERTH RES­I­DENTS are warned to watch out for swoop­ing mag­pies at this time of year.

Aus­tralia’s Foun­da­tion for Na­tional Parks and Wildlife has warned the next six weeks is peak time for mag­pie swoop­ing.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive of the foun­da­tion Su­sanna Brad­shaw said it could be scary be­ing swooped by a mag­pie, es­pe­cially for chil­dren.

“They will only swoop for about six weeks of the year. Septem­ber is usu­ally the peak swoop­ing month and then they will start to calm down and you can go about your busi­ness in peace again,” she said.

“The most com­mon tar­gets for mag­pies are peo­ple rid­ing bi­cy­cles, young chil­dren and males, although each mag­pie will usu­ally have its own tar­get.

“These birds are very in­tel­li­gent and will of­ten ap­proach from be­hind or from the di­rec­tion of the sun to try and catch you un­awares.”

Ms Brad­shaw said peo­ple need to watch out for male mag­pies as fe­male mag­pies do not swoop at all. Only 9 per cent of male mag- pies swoop, as they be­lieve they are pro­tect­ing their off­spring.

“The worst thing you can do when a mag­pie is swoop­ing you is to try and fight back,” she said.

“Throw­ing rocks or sticks at a mag­pie will only fur­ther ag­gra­vate it.”

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