Western magpie
Western magpie
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Posted in Categories: Birds -  Wild -  

As with many of our birds, the australian magpie is separated into 3 or 4 different sub-species that have distinct ranges across the continent. They are generally very successfully adapted to modern human settlement and exist in healthy numbers in most urban areas. At this time of year orphaned magpies are often found in gardens and on the street. Well meaning people frequently feed them mincemeat, believing it to be similar to what they eat normally. Sadly plain mince is hopelessly low in calcium, and growing birds will rapidly become calcium deficient leading to growth abnormalities, thinning of bones and subsequent fractures, and eventually death. Mince can be easily mixed up with a calcium supplement, some egg and a bit of bran to make a more balanced meal. However, one key is simply to not feed them too much. If they are to have any chance of survival they must learn to feed themselves and if overfed by people they will become dependant on our supply. But a little bit of a supplement helps make up for the patch of bush that used to exist before your house was built, and allows us to get a bit closer to these marvellous creatures.

4 Comments on "Western magpie"

  • Samantha // 2005-11-21 08:20:25

    I've never seen a magpie look so graceful (probably because they're normally coming at my head). Thank-you for the comment, you're completely right about high school kids, they are cruel, but oddly it was my choice in friends that was the worse. I hope your daugher gets out relatively unscathed.
  • Peter // 2005-11-28 12:55:25

    Wounderful shot, and if my english wasn't that poor I'd find some better words too, but it is hence I borrow Samantha's: graceful. it is. So they are the magpies. Now this mystery of my life is finally discovered. :D
  • Tuan // 2005-12-01 12:14:36

    these guys can be pretty annoying, but wow what an awesome photo!! the bird looks great against that stunning background.
  • JAMIE // 2006-01-14 03:53:34

    i love magpies and most of the birds that come from this family - ravens and stellar's jays as well. this is a beautiful, unique, shot.

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