Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Beware the Magpies of Spring

Warmer days, basking lizards, birds pecking out the eyes of small children - ah, the signs of spring in Sydney. Lush flowers are overwhelming Sydney with their myriad of fragrances.  Birds are nesting and blue-tongued skinks emerge to soak up warm rays of the sun.
And magpies are raising chicks. Apparently these large, crow-like birds get quite defensive during the breeding season. Male magpies often attack humans passing their nests. In particular, they seem to go after the eyes of children, and the heads of people with red hair. Lovely. 

A few weeks ago, a girl was biking around her local park when a magpie repeatedly attacked her. It pecked her eye out. So if you're in Australia in spring, keep an eye to the sky.

Attacks like this are not too common, and the rest of the year the magpies are very nice and they do have a beautiful song. It's just breeding season you have to watch out for. 

But it seems Australians just take it in stride like everything else. Just watch your eyes, and no worries.

So, I will leave this entry with a boat safety tip.
Boat Safety 101: This is NOT how you row the boat ashore.

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