Everything You Need to Know about Australian Magpie Swooping Season

Protecting your baby is natural – and it’s the same for magpies.
The black and white swoop loosens her grip.

Here’s how to avoid their protective swoop.
She drops her baby.

Magpies are definitely not bloodthirsty monsters.
Ten percent of magpies swoop.

In fact, not all magpies swoop – thankfully!
This doesn’t comfort the mother.

The ones that do are just using their body language.
Her screeching obliterates their body language.
Beak clapping, whooshing above your head and screeching.
Her baby’s egg-shell skull cracks.

Magpies usually breed between August and October.
She only bred once.

It’s during these times some males defend their nests.
She can’t defend; buys a gun.

It’s true, magpies remember your face. They have long memories.
She dreams in black and white, slaughters magpies each swooping season.

So, if you’ve been swooped before, you’re likely to get the same treatment again.
Her memory is a crack on concrete, stuffed with blood-speckled feathers.



Jenny Robb, from Liverpool, is published in online and print magazines, and poetry anthologies.  2021 publications include Dream Catcher, Prole, Orbis, The Dawntreader and The Lighthouse Journal. Her debut collection, The Doll’s Hospital will be published by Yaffle Press soon.  Twitter: @jirobb   Instagram: jenny_robb


Note: This is taken from The Government of South Australia, Department for Environment and Water’s advice about Magpie Swooping Season. A mother dropped her baby in Swooping Season 2021, the baby died. My response is in italics.