How to avoid magpie swoops

Whether you’re walking, cycling or running, magpies present a worrying concern as Spring and Summer approach in Australia.

The usually friendly native birds can turn nasty during their nesting season, with parents of developing chicks becoming highly protective. If you’ve ever been clipped over the head by a swooping magpie, you’ll know the fear these birds can strike you with!

So here are a few tips to help avoid magpie swoops:

1. Avoid areas known for having nesting magpies who like to swoop.

2. Wear a hat and sunglasses if walking or running

3. If cycling, attach ‘boggle eyes’ or cable/zip ties the top of your helmet

4. Wave a stick above your head if you’re passing through an area known for nasty attacks

5. As a last resort, run extra fast through the magpie zone!

6. Find and report magpie attack locations on sites like

Photo credit: DSE Victoria (Flickr)

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