Bega Valley Shire CouncilBega Valley Shire Council

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Beware swooping magpies

Tuesday 13 October 2015

Bega Valley Shire Council is reminding residents to be aware that it is that time of year when magpies ‘swoop’ to protect their eggs or fledglings from pedestrians or cyclists who pass through their territory.

Understanding magpies and knowing how to behave around them can help in avoiding injury from swooping birds.  Some tips include:

  • Wear a broad-brimmed hat and sunglasses or shelter under an umbrella to protect your face from swooping magpies.
  • Paint or stick large ‘eyes’ on the back of your hat.
  • If a magpie swoops while you are cycling, it will probably stop swooping if you get off your bike and walk.
  • Avoid known magpie nesting areas by taking alternative routes during the breeding season.
  • If you must enter a magpie nesting area the birds will be less likely to swoop if they are watched constantly, or if people walk in a group.
  • Waving sticks or umbrellas in the air or attaching a brightly coloured flag on a long pole to your bicycle can deter magpies from swooping.

Council will soon be erecting signs in areas where regular ‘swooping’ has been reported.


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