T. TheSeagull Well-known member. During the winter the magpie’s diet is largely vegetarian, and in the summer predominately ground invertebrates. Because nest sites are limited, between 25 per cent and 60 per cent of magpies in an area do not breed. Magpie bird is a distinctive black and white bird. They're a gardener's dream, a cyclist's nightmare, and according to the Guardian's poll, Australia's bird of the year. Well, then Madge Magpie took some feathers and stuff and lined the nest very comfortably with it. 4. Other species of birds and mammals often use unoccupied magpie nests. Black head, body and wings, with a sharply defined white belly and a long black tail, the tail and wings tinged with iridescent greens, blues and purples when seen at close quarters. Weight: These magpies weigh between 220 and 350 grams (8–12 oz). Magpies. I have noticed today that the female has returned to the nest & I … They especially like the area under the bird baths, as it's always muddy there (thanks to me refilling every day, and the Starlings splashing like mad). The tail accounts for over half the total length of the bird and is an indication of the bird's status in its society. 3. They will also feed on the eggs and chicks … ... which it collects and hordes in its nest. “That suits me,” cried the starling, and off it flew; and very comfortable nests have starlings. Size: The length of these birds is 37 to 43 cm (14.5–17 in) with a wingspan of 65–85 cm (26–33 in).. My garden, being basically all mud, is a favourite of the Magpies when nest building/repairing. The head, breast and back are black, the shoulders patches, belly and flanks are white. For the magpie is the cleverest bird of all at building nests. Legends and Short Stories to Share on Bird Day : The Magpie's Nest. All the birds of the air came to the magpie and asked her to teach them how to build nests. The strategy they choose is based on risk assessment. They have just all left the nest after around 3 weeks and both male & female feeding them. In a new study in the journal Ethology, researchers from the University of Granada found that the Great Spotted Cuckoo laid its eggs in the nests of magpies while the magpie was sitting on the nest. Magpies help control pest insects such as grasshoppers and tent caterpillars, and also “clean up” dead animals and garbage scattered by other animals. Only during the spring, when feeding its young, does it become a major predator, raiding the nests of songbirds for eggs and young. Reputation: Magpies are well known for their thievery, avidly collecting shiny objects to adorn their nests. From a distance the Magpie is a black and white crow with a long tail. 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