Magpie Nest Site

To: "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: Magpie Nest Site
From: "Robyn" <>
Date: Fri, 1 Sep 2006 22:08:32 +1000
I live in an urban area where the houses with large yards and large trees are 
being sold and replaced by crowded unit blocks which barely allow for a few 

The two blocks opposite me had the biggest Melaleuca quinquenervia which 
blossomed serveral times a year, and was a wonderful resource for all the local 
birds.   It provided food, protection, insects, and nesting sites.   However, 
it has now gone and only concrete blocks being fashioned unto units remain.   
Not a shrub, not a blade of grass.   There is only one large tree in the couple 
of blocks in front of my home now, and the White-faced Heron is using that.   I 
think even the pair of crows has had to move on.

The magpie territory is at the front of my house, not the back.   That belongs 
to the Grey Butcherbirds.    Seemingly, the magpies' only option for a nest 
site was the poincianna tree in my next door neighbour's yard, but I have never 
ever seen a bird's nest in that tree, and the magpie has not used it either.

For the first time in my experience, I am watching the magpies nesting in a 
PALM.   I don't know my palms, but it is something like a Royal Palm.   Last 
year's young had not changed to their adult plumage, but they have been evicted 
from the area, and the parents are trying to raise young unassisted.   The palm 
fronds are very thick towards the crown and I cannot actually see the nest 
structure, but the young are definitely growing and requiring lots of feeding.

In the eighteen years I've lived here, the magpie family group has been getting 
smaller and smaller, and although the breeding male and female have changed 
several times over the period, they have maintained the one swooping habit.   
NEVER swoop humans, ALWAYS dogs.   Obviously learned from one bird to the next.

Hope we don't lose them, along with so many of our birds from this district.


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