2013 Bonanza Bird #21: Australian Magpie

We're adding a new bird each day until we reach our 500th Birdorable species! Today's Bonanza bird is the Australian Magpie.

Birdorable Australian Magpie

Australian Magpies are not closely related to the magpies found in Europe or the Americas. When European naturalists came to settle in Australia, they noted the plumage of the new Australian species was similar to the Eurasian Magpie. They named the bird after their old familiar. Did you know that the American Robin was named in the same fashion? It is not related to the European Robin, but both species share a brownish plumage with a rich reddish-orange breast.

Australian magpie wb
Australian Magpie by Lip Kee (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Australian Magpies are conspicuous and common within their range. They are omnivorous and are well-adapted to a variety of habitat types. They enjoy popularity in Australia and are the mascot for several sports teams as well as the official emblem of the Government of South Australia. Although they are popular, during breeding season they can be a menace as they fiercely protect their nest site. They may swoop down on anyone they perceive as a threat to their territory. August to October is the peak season for magpie attacks, and both pedestrians and cyclists are deemed fair game.

australian magpie

Tomorrow's new species is a North American songbird with a buzzy song and blue wings.

bonanza-2013-preview-22

Comments

Jays and Kestrels on October 20, 2013 at 5:50 PM wrote:
Blue winged warbler?
Louise Warner on February 23, 2017 at 3:59 PM wrote:
blue winged warbler!!!
Spurwing Plover on April 21, 2020 at 5:03 AM wrote:
Black and White and with their Red Eyes they would make you blink first and make you turn away

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