Last Updated on by Catherine Tobsing
Formosa Blue Magpie (above)
Lisa K. has a conundrum with taking her Amazon outside,
I have a 23-year-old Blue Crown Conure named Louie.
I like to put her out on my deck in the warmer weather in a spare cage so she can enjoy the sun and nice weather (when we get it in unpredictable Colorado).
I stopped putting Louie out since a group of Magpies in our neighborhood kept landing on her cage and putting their beaks through the bars and terrorizing her. I don’t leave her alone on the deck but they kept coming back even when I would come out and scare them away.
Any ideas? Thank you, Lisa
Here’s the thing Lisa,
Ironically in some countries, magpies are kept as pets.
They are smart and easy to socialize with (aside from liking shiny things).
Magpies raised around humans since birth will get along with the species, wild magpies, not so much.
Most likely you are seeing American Magpies vs Eurasian Magpies, Oriental Magpie Robin, or Azure-Winged Magpies, all of whom are aggressive birds.
Most likely it’s the female magpies swooping/attacking your birds because they are protecting their territory which may have juveniles not too far.
Magpie breeding areas are in short supply so security is a strong motivator.
Waving arms and handheld objects at swoopers only pisses them off more.
If you are still motivated to bring Louie out of doors in spite of a global bird flu epidemic, your best play would be to add/ build an “Anti-Magpie” cage around Louie’s cage guaranteeing separation from those extraordinarily strong beaks and your BCC.
La Trobe University Ph.D. candidate Robin Johnsson has said,
“Magpies are very social, they have very complex family groups (up to 20) and their carols are partly used to establish their territorial boundaries.
And they often carol together, it’s seen as a way to strengthen family bonds between magpies.”