Watch out, magpies about

Watch out, magpies about

Spring is here, so birds are busily building their nests, and protecting their young.

Swooping season occurs when magpies and other birds build nests to raise their young. When eggs are present in the nests, some magpies and other birds will defend their territory from intruders. Not all birds swoop, however those that do see humans, pets and other birds as a threat.

Magpies tend to present the greatest issue for our city, so there are a number of ways to stay safe outdoors if you see a swooping magpie. Firstly, it is best not to stop or run but to walk away quickly while looking at the magpie as it is less likely to swoop if you look at them. New South Wales Department of Planning, Industry and Environment suggests that you can also wear sunglasses on the back of your head, wear a hat a with pair of eyes drawn on the back, wear a helmet, or carry an open umbrella or stick above your head. Avoid waving items held above your head as this may provoke the bird.

To keep pets safe from swooping magpies, make sure they are safe in your house, garage, kennel, or hut, ensure dogs are on a lead when walking through a magpie’s territory, and avoid leaving pet food in your yard.

For more tips on how to stay safe during magpie season visit environment.nsw.gov.au/questions/aggressive-birds-swooping.