"black and white" thing

To: <>
Subject: "black and white" thing
From: "Philip Veerman" <>
Date: Tue, 3 Sep 2013 21:08:01 +1000
I vaguely thought the book "Magpie Alert" (Darryl Jones) addressed the issue of some B&W birds (in particular, magpies) attack B&W dogs preferentially over other coloured dogs but at a quick look I didn't find it just now. If it did, I don't think this was shown. I suspect the suggestion is probably a little silly. Wasn't this discussed here some time ago and the issue was about fox or dog? I think the evidence shown in the book is that some Magpies preferentially attack certain people or bike riders or certain dogs and others have different choices. As in an individual may have a favourite target. As to Has Chisholm’s observation been verified? well yes, in that Aus has many B&W birds, many of them are aggressive, often form nesting associations. I think he was making observations and ideas rather than being too specific of things to verify. Maybe or likely some graduate student has done some data amassing on this somewhere.
Geoff's point supports mine. Although a BsK is mostly white.
-----Original Message-----From: Geoffrey Dabb [ Sent: Tuesday, 3 September 2013 7:29 PM      To:
Subject: FW: [canberrabirds] "black and white" thing

This is a little confusing.  In the original report a black and white thing was attacking a grey thing with a small amount of black.  WWs routinely harass raptors of any colour within their territory.


From: David Rosalky [ Sent: Tuesday, 3 September 2013 6:51 PM      To:
Subject: RE: [canberrabirds] "black and white" thing


Thanks Phil


As I recall discussion eons ago, some B&W birds (in particular, magpies) attack B&W dogs preferentially over other coloured dogs.  The whole thing may be an age-challenged spouses’ tale (please note my political correctness), but I thought it was a good story and these little anecdotes feed the story, even if not scientifically proven.  Has Chisholm’s observation been verified?




From: Philip Veerman Sent: Tuesday, 3 September 2013 6:38 PM      To: 'David Rosalky';
Subject: [canberrabirds] "black and white" thing


Many years ago Alec Chisholm devoted a chapter of a book of his to this "black and white” thing and that it is a notable feature of Australian birds. Sure WW are aggressive, as are many birds when defending a nest and some black and white ones are notably so to other black and white birds. But WW are aggressive to most raptors (which are mostly not pied). I mentioned this in The GBS Report under the Magpie-lark text. In that case I expect that probably when they have high hormone levels they interpret Magpies as a supernormal version of themselves and harass them for the same reason that other birds attach reflections of themselves.




-----Original Message-----From: David Rosalky Sent: Monday, 2 September 2013 6:51 PM      To:       Subject: RE: [canberrabirds] 3 x baillon's crake 4 x Quail BSK under attack by wagtail Jerra Wetlands

Kym Bradley wrote:


Not long before a Wagtail was attempting to attack a Black Shouldered Kite


Is this the “black and white” thing again?


David R


PS Great photos as usual, Kym


<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 Canberra Ornithologists Group 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 list contact David McDonald, list manager, phone (02) 6231 8904 or email . If you can not contact David McDonald e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU