Magpie attacks have been recorded right across the region | Video

LOOK OUT: Magpie breeding season has started and the birds are racking up quite a few swoops across the region. Photo: FILE
LOOK OUT: Magpie breeding season has started and the birds are racking up quite a few swoops across the region. Photo: FILE

MAGPIES in Orange might have caused injury, but there have been more attacks in Bathurst, new data shows.

With magpie breeding season well underway across the region, many people have taken to social media and the Magpie Alert website to share their stories of attacks and swoops.

As of Thursday afternoon, 1193 attacks across Australia had already been registered on Magpie Alert, with 143 of these resulting in an injury.

One of those injuries occurred in Orange when a cyclist, who used the user name of Woodsy, reported an attack on Cameron Place.

“Swooped three times and pecked on left side of face whilst cycling, causing minor bleeding,” the rider reported.

This was the only attack reported in Orange, meanwhile in Bathurst there have been five reported.

Among the reported Bathurst attacks, was from a cyclist with the user name of Radio Addict who said while they were not injured in the magpie swoop on Vale Road it was “quite a scare”.

“This magpie took exception to me enjoying an afternoon ride and came soundlessly from behind before launching a repeated attack with plenty of beak clapping, swooping and squawking,” the post read.

“Riders beware as it attacks silently before making it’s presence known resulting in quite a scare.

“Also beware of the traffic in case you swerve from fright into the path of a following vehicle.”

While on Russell Street in Bathurst, a person called Evan H reported another swoop.

“Quite a pesky little bugger. Certainly hit the back of the helmet with some force a number of times for about 50 metres,” the post stated.

 In Dubbo, a swooping magpie on Glenabbey Drive resulted in another report on the website.

“Magpie attacked me twice around the same location, the first time around 7.30am and the second time on the way back around 7.50am,” the post read.

“Tried to remain calm, protected my head with my arms, stopped running and started to walk.

“On both occasions, the bird was quite aggressive and swooped me two or three times despite being away more than 60 meters from the first encounter.”

There was also just one report of a swooping magpie in Forbes.

User name CD said the recent attack took place on Bedgerabong Road.

“One bird swooping and snapping its beak whilst cycling along the bike path,” the post stated.

“Bird swooped repeatedly for about 300 metres.”

Swooping Magpie Safety Tips

Five seasons of collecting data on magpie swoops has resulted in a list of dos and don’ts when it comes to attacks. has the following tips:

  • If you are swooped while cycling get off of your bicycle, a large number of injuries reported on are caused by accidents where cyclists fall off during an attack.
  • Keep an ear open for their distinctive calls.
  • It is important to try to stay calm, if you panic and flap then this is more likely to appear as aggressive behaviour and provoke a further attack.
  • Wear sun glasses and with large wide-brimmed hat to protect your head and eyes.
  • Face the magpie they tend to attack from behind so facing them should avert an attack. Remember to keep facing the bird as you walk out of their territory some birds will swoop as soon as you look away.
  • Warn other people where the magpies are swooping locally by registering the swoops with along with a description on our national mappie map.


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