Terror from the sky

By KIREN THANDI

SITTING safely inside, sipping your tea, coffee, or aqua minerale, you are lulled into a false sense of security and, for a little while at least, you forget the danger lurking outside, biding its time, waiting, waiting...

But from that first step out the door you are suddenly aware that it's hunting season and you, the hunted, are fair game.

The magpies are here. And they're coming right at you.

While being targeted by a magpie seems to be an inevitable part of growing up in Australia, it's no laughing matter.

When magpies attack they can cause real damage, with the eye being the most common target.

Earlier this week a man contacted The Coffs Coast Advocate after an angry magpie dive-bombed him while he was riding his pushbike on the Hogbin Drive cycleway south of the airport turnoff.

Luckily, the man's helmet saved his scalp from the sharp beak, but his will not be the only attack over the next few weeks.

Most magpie attacks occur between August and November, when their chicks are in the nest.

While it may seem that they're coming at you left, right and centre the fact is that only the male magpie attacks (while the female sits on the eggs), and only a small percentage of them.

So here's a friendly heads up (or rather, keep your head down) to remind you to watch out for the magpies.



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