Vindictive Grey Butcherbird

To: Julie Neumann <>
Subject: Vindictive Grey Butcherbird
From: Russell Woodford <>
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 2018 01:33:21 +1000
Hi Julie

Unfortunately there really isn't any other way to control this bird's
behaviour. Butcherbirds can be every bit as menacing as magpies when
defending their territory during the nesting period. I have a friend who
was targeted by an individual Grey Butcherbird a couple of years ago.
Whenever she left her apartment the bird would swoop her, whether she was
walking or cycling - and even made it difficult for her to get to and from
her car. I think it was worse the second season too. She moved before the
next breeding season.

I've read somewhere that some birds can recognise individual humans, even
when the change clothing, headwear, etc. My friend is convinced this is
true of butcherbirds, as her bird ignored most other people except for some
cyclists. I have another friend who used to feed butcherbirds and magpies
from his balcony until he got sick of them begging, but there is now one
Pied Butcherbird that he is convinced plays with him. It will fly straight
at his head but veer off without really swooping him, and has never made
contact. Usually it will wait until he's looking at it before it flies at
him - at other times it just hops around on the railing. I'm a bit
concerned about this bird's behaviour, because there are documented records
of magpies flying at people's faces and causing eye injury, but my friend
is not phased by the butcherbird and is convinced it is being playful and
never aggressive. Hmmm....

(Geelong, Vic but returning to Brisbane soon)

On Sun, 23 Sep 2018 at 14:14, Julie Neumann via Birding-Aus <
> wrote:

> A friend who works as a GA in a school yard is having trouble with a
> vicious Grey Butcherbird. It seems to be intent on attacking him even
> though he wears a hat and long sleeves. He comes home bloodied each day.
> The attacks also happened  last year but were not as ferocious. Does anyone
> have a solution other than eliminating the bird?
> Julie Neumann
> 0247393063preferred. 0429130679
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