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Menacing Magpies

By Scott Lackenby | Dated September 30, 2014

Spring is a glorious time of year. The weather starts to warm up, the days get longer and flowers start popping up. But Spring is also the time of year that many species start getting ready to breed. And while generally this has little to no impact on us, in the case of Magpies, breeding season can be potentially hazardous!

Magpies are found in areas where there are trees for shelter and nesting and open patches of grass for foraging for food. Basically, Magpies are found everywhere! And while they are generally a well mannered bird, come breeding season, they can become especially territorial. Magpies usually start nesting between June and December. It takes around 20 days for their eggs to hatch and the bubs spend around 4 weeks in the nest before they fledge, where they are able to flap but not fly. It is during the nesting and fledgling period that Mummy and Daddy Maggie will be especially protective. And this is when we humans can start to feel the wrath of these protective parents. Magpies swoop to defend their territory and young from intruders, which unfortunately can be the jogger at the park or the child riding his bike. This defence strategy can cause serious injuries, especially if we are pecked or scratched on the face.

It’s important to remember if you frequent an area that has a particularly protective Magpie that there is likely a nest nearby and s/he is just doing what any new parent would do if they felt their young was being threatened. Unfortunately, if you are on the receiving end of the swooping, it can be hard to feel compassion for the swopping menace! So what can you do to protect yourself? Where possible, avoid areas where you know Magpies are nesting or where there is a protective Magpie. Many local parks will put up notices when there is a swooping Magpie in the area. If you can’t avoid the area, protect your self. Wear a hat or helmet or carry an umbrella when walking through these areas. I remember as a child having great fun decorating an ice cream container helmets to wear to protect us from a marauding Magpie at school.

This is also the time of year that we start to see fledgling birds on the ground. It is extremely important NOT to touch or move the fledgling unless it is in imminent danger. The parents of these fledglings won’t be too far away and time on the ground is important for their growth and development. Obviously if the fledgling is in danger from other animals or you haven’t seen the parents around for a day or more, then that is the time to contact Sydney Wildlife Service or WIRES for advice. Where possible they do not recommend removing fledglings from the area in which they are found.
maggie
For information and advice on what to if you find sick or injured wildlife contact either Sydney Wildlife Service on 9413 4300 or WIRES on 1300 094 737

Written by Scott Lackenby

Scott joined the team at Gordon Vets in 1999, where he was immediately impressed with the high standard of customer service. Scott is very popular amongst clients for his kind hearted approach to pet care and his great sense of humour. His particular areas of interest are endocrinology and dermatology.

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Eve Barratt
Eve Barratt
01:17 04 Aug 20
I took our little girl Coco for her very first vet visit yesterday. Dr Helen gave Coco a thoroughly check-up and provided me with useful information as the first time puppy owner. Coco is now enrolled in the puppy school and will return back for her 2nd vaccine in a couple of week!
Claire Turner
Claire Turner
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Care & attention for your furry friends second to none.
Kimba
Kimba
02:50 09 Jul 20
Dr David and the team have provided real care, support and expertise for our furry family members over 25 years. They've also readily taken in injured wildlife. A great team of Vets and nurses - thanks for all you do!
Jayna Hirani
Jayna Hirani
03:43 09 Apr 20
Quality care and advice at every visit. The staff are friendly and informative and genuinely care about your pets. I am 100% confident that my cat and dog always receive the best pet healthcare and as pet parents that's all we want.
Marianne Broeng
Marianne Broeng
23:23 28 Jan 20
Gordon Vet has looked after my golden retriever since she was 9 weeks. Everyone has been amazing and caring with lots of experience. I have been able to ask any questions and always been welcome. Even one day when she stepped on a bee in the evening, they stayed open until we got there and helped her get it out. Thanks to all the staff :-)
Lizzie Wei
Lizzie Wei
00:56 18 Jan 20
We just moved to Gordon couple month ago and need to get my cat vaccinated. We found this hospital through google and I need to say they provide excellent service and very professional! The doctor really knows cat. Highly recommended!
Lara Bisley
Lara Bisley
08:15 27 Nov 19
Exceptional veterinary hospital. I have been taking my dog here for many years and although I now live in the Eastern Suburbs, I still drive across town to see the Vets at Gordon. The staff are highly skilled, compassionate, friendly and helpful. My 9 year old dog has had 2 knee operations (1 on each knee!) and the outcome of these surgeries far exceeded my expectations. I have been incredibly impressed with the care provided during all of our visits. I would highly recommend Gordon Vet Hospital.
Eugenie Goodyer
Eugenie Goodyer
23:22 21 Oct 19
Very friendly staff. Wonderful care for all our animals A++
Jennie Keogh
Jennie Keogh
06:36 21 Oct 19
Fantastic and friendly staff who you can tell really care about your pet. Their follow up service is also very reassuring. I also board my cat with Gordon Vet and I feel very comfortable to know he's in safe and caring hands. I'm so glad I found this clinic.
Newsha Amiri
Newsha Amiri
20:24 03 Oct 19
We took our dog there and Dr. David take care of his skin issues. he was so caring and professional.
Luxe Sydney Mum
Luxe Sydney Mum
06:37 02 Sep 19
Compassionate, caring and highly skilled veterinary surgeons who treat their patients and owners with respect. The nursing and administration staff are efficient and remember their patients by name which is a lovely touch. A lovely vet practice which despite our Golden Retriever Finn’s complex medical history, is always welcoming to him and he never displays any signs of anxiety when attending. Dr Helen is lovely and a firm favourite of ours!
Lihong Xing
Lihong Xing
05:00 05 Nov 18
Highly recommend Dr David, Scott, Helen, and Catherine, I've taken my cat to see all the doctors here.
Jeremy Tarbox
Jeremy Tarbox
22:55 10 Sep 18
We found a stray, agitated dog in front of our house last night. We phoned but got no help from the Council ranger who gave two options: tie him up in front yard overnight or "let him loose, he'll find his own way home" :( So we phoned Gordon Vet: they stayed open a few minutes so we could run him up and he could have a bed and dinner. Thank you Gordon Vet Hospital, hope he gets home soon!!! :)
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Vishal Kapoor
01:52 04 Sep 18
Really amazing staff members. Their systems and processes are also very
Gerry Stevens
Gerry Stevens
11:01 14 Jul 18
Good competant vet. Did what I needed. Staff friendly. Cat's well.
Arezu A
Arezu A
03:20 15 Feb 18
Absolutely love the service here. I switched from other Vets to this Vet as the staff here are quite attentive and really care about your furry baby! I have basically seen most of the Dr's here and all of them so far have been fantastic, friendly and fun to speak with! Easy to locate and enough parking available! 5 Stars indeed!
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