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Swooping Season

Swooping Season

The new season brings swooping magpies

Magpies warbling is one of the most familiar sounds of Australian wildlife, yet the whirring and whooshing sounds of a swooping magpie approaching tends to fill most people with dread.

Now that spring has arrived, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is reminding the community to be on alert for magpie swooping as the breeding season for native birds is underway.

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DELWP spokesperson Mark Breguet said bird swooping is a part of living in Australia.

"We share our environment with native wildlife," he said.

"Magpie swooping occurs every year during breeding season and is largely a defensive manoeuvre carried out by some male birds when people come within close range of their eggs or fledgling birds.

"The magpies are simply taking action to defend their young."

Mr Breguet said while being swooped by a bird is not pleasant and can even cause injury, it is healthy bird behaviour and the best response is to keep away from the area.

"It is illegal to harm native birds and offences can result in fines or imprisonment in extreme cases," he said.

"It is up to us to live alongside our wildlife and respect it,"

"If you do end up in an area where there is a swooping bird, try to protect your head and eyes and move quickly through the area."

Residents across Northern Victoria are encouraged to share information about swooping birds by logging their encounter on the swooping bird map on the DELWP website.

BirdLife Australia, Australia’s leading bird conservation organisation, suggested the swooping season this year has begun earlier than usual; with numerous swooping incidents reported in the latter part of winter.

To report a swooping incident by any species of bird on Victoria's swooping bird map, visit the DEWLP Website.

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