Eurasian Magpie (Pica pica) in Hunter Valley

To: Dion Hobcroft <>,
Subject: Eurasian Magpie (Pica pica) in Hunter Valley
From: Anthony Overs <>
Date: Wed, 13 Sep 2000 09:27:48 +1000
I heard a theory about a recent sighting of Eurasian Magpie in the Hunter
valley. Apparently Magpies are a reasonably common cage bird in parts of
Europe. The suggestion was that the bird was smuggled into Australia by
Kosovar refugees, and released (or escaped) from the place where the
refugees were staying in the valley.

Sounded like a good theory. Any comments?


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Dion Hobcroft [SMTP:
> Sent: Tuesday, September 12, 2000 8:06 PM
> To:   
> Subject:      [BIRDING-AUS] Eurasian Magpie (Pica pica) in Hunter Valley
> An anonymous call to Birdline NSW reported a Eurasian Magpie at Liddell
> Power Station. Enquiries today resulted in clearly identifiable
> photographs
> of a single adult Eurasian Magpie being examined. The bird had been
> present
> since December but had disappeared about two weeks ago. It was shy and
> wary
> particularly of Australian Magpies which had been harassing it. It
> actively
> scavenged around the gardens taking handouts from staff. The staff had
> never
> seen a bird like this before and great photos were obtained by Jeff Yates
> and identified by his father. The bird is currently absent but Jeff said
> he
> would let us know if it reappeared and we can arrange a group viewing.
> Permission is necessary to enter the plant with strict safety guidelines.
> I
> will get the word out asap but it would be beneficial to
> organise-co-ordinate any visits so as not to over extend our welcome.
> This Eurasian Magpie is most likely a ship assisted bird probably from
> north
> Asia. This species is abundant through much of the Palaearctic and
> Nearctic
> with several races. The Chinese like magpies and do not disturb them. The
> ship would have docked in Newcastle with the magpie moving along the
> Hunter
> River or New England Highway ending up in ideal open habitat at Liddell
> Dam
> where it has taken up successful existence until recently. Quite
> accomplished world travelling and possibly a first southern hemisphere
> record.. As a suspected ship assist this record is likely to be a
> supplementary species only on the Oz list. As a loner it is unlikely to
> become a feral pest but other unwanted corvids such as House Crows are
> sometimes destroyed. Maybe this magpie new it had to move along-not over
> extend its welcome.
> Any developments and I will keep you posted.
> Dion
> Birding-Aus is on the Web at
> To unsubscribe from this mailing list, send the message
> "unsubscribe birding-aus" (no quotes, no Subject line)
> to 


<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU