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Thread: Magpie alert for cyclists

  1. #1
    MotherBear's Avatar
    MotherBear is offline The missing link
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    Default Magpie alert for cyclists

    Watchout all you keen cyclists amongst us!

    Aggressive magpies plague cyclists
    By CHARLIE GATES - The Press | Friday, 7 September 2007

    Quardle ardle oodle ardle wardle doodle.
    If you hear that noise when you are cycling, watch out.

    The territorial call of the magpie, described memorably by Canterbury poet Denis Glover, often heralds an attack.

    Environment Canterbury (ECan) councillors are puzzling over how to ward off aggressive magpies after complaints from runners and cyclists that the birds often draw blood in swooping attacks.

    Magpies can become fiercely territorial during the breeding season and are capable of inflicting severe cuts with their beaks and claws. Cr Alec O'Neill turned to the Canterbury Public Issues Forum website this week to find a solution to the bird attacks.

    "I received a constituency inquiry yesterday from a Christchurch resident complaining that while training alone on her bicycle she has been attacked on many occasions by a magpie or magpies," he wrote.

    "She wanted to know what ECan was prepared to do about this as it is a danger to the rider and to passing motorists and could easily result in injury or death."

    One response suggested wearing a false eagle on your cycling helmet, but this was trumped by a St Albans resident who claimed his research had come up with a failsafe way of warding off magpie attacks.

    All you have to do is wear a paper face-mask on the back of your head, wrote John Knox.

    "We tested several methods and found the most effective one was to wear a paper face-mask on the back of your head. Wearing sunglasses facing backwards did work to some degree also," he wrote.

    He suggests ECan could "cheaply produce light cardboard face-masks depicting images perhaps of their favourite people or sports stars".

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  2. #2
    Welshgirl's Avatar
    Welshgirl is offline Super Moderator
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    Sorry, I'm sure this is a very serious problem for those who have been attacked but...........

    Wearing your sunglasses on the back of your head, or light cardboard face-masks depicting images perhaps of their favourite people or sports stars? Can you imagine the responses people would get from the public??

    I'd buy my face-mask with a picture of Edward Scissorhands on it

  3. #3
    selchie's Avatar
    selchie is offline All Knowing Deity
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    It reminds me of being dive-bombed by blackbirds one year. Other folks had reported getting hair pulled. I just learned to give their nesting tree a wide berth until the chicks had fletched. It was certainly interesting to watch them defending their little ones.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

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