Masked Lapwings swooping

To: Birding Aus <>
Subject: Masked Lapwings swooping
From: Scot Mcphee <>
Date: Sun, 2 Sep 2007 22:43:46 +1000
I've often wondered why some Lapwings or Magpies are worse than others when it comes to swooping? Or why some birds target particular individuals? Perhaps they have memories of being tormented by people when young, or by a particular person fitting a specific description (like Shirley's golfer, or Greg's kids next door). Pure speculation of course, but perhaps there's
something there?

Well there's a magpie in the park across from the corner of Milton Road and Torwood St, Auchenflower (Brisbane) and he is right little vicious bugger. He attacks mostly cyclists. A couple of years ago he got me good in the side of the face and drew a bit of blood. Over a month ago in July (fairly early for swooping season) he really got my wife bad and drew quite a bit of blood. He is well known in the cycling community. He often "stalks" his victims. Waits patiently across the road when the lights are red until you start moving. He will make numerous attempts at you and chase you for a fair distance nearly 100 metres down to the railway underpass.

Don't know what made him like this however. Maybe just inner city living. However our local pair of breeding maggies are very tolerant of humans and have never swooped anyone to my knowledge.


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