Magpie taking nestlings

Subject: Magpie taking nestlings
Date: Wed, 8 Oct 2008 06:53:28 +0800 (WST)
G'day all

My office looks out over a nice garden planted to some dense local native
shrubs.  The two main resident bird species are New Holland Honeyeaters
and House Sparrows.  Both have nests scattered through the shrubs.  As I
write an adult male Australian Magpie is systematically working through
the denser shrubs looking for nests.  The honeyeaters and sparrows are
frantically watching all this.  I don't know how successful the Magpie is
but he has been doing this several times a day for weeks now.

Hanzab reports birds as a minor prey item for Magpies and has few examples
of Magpies taking eggs or nestlings.  This individual seems to have become
something of a specialist nest raider.

Steve Clark
Hamilton, Victoria


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