Friday, May 24, 2019

Opportunistic scavenging or active predation of a blackbird (Turdus merula) by an Australian Magpie (Gymnorhina tibicen)?

TitleOpportunistic scavenging or active predation of a blackbird (Turdus merula) by an Australian Magpie (Gymnorhina tibicen)?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsParker, KA
JournalNotornis
Volume54
Issue2
Pagination92-92
Type of Articleshort note
Abstract

[First pargraph...]
As I crossed a car park at 0740, 13 Apr 2006, on the Massey University grounds, Albany, Auckland, I observed a subadult Australian magpie (Gymnorhina tibicen) with an adult female blackbird (Turdus merula) in its bill. The blackbird appeared freshly dead, so I approached to check the bird. The magpie dropped the blackbird as I approached and then backed off c.4 m. The blackbird was still warm and had clearly died only recently. I left the blackbird on the ground, and retreated 10 m. The magpie quickly returned to the blackbird, and proceeded to feed on the body. Several times it picked up the blackbird and carried it up to 2 m, sometimes dragging it along the ground. Each time it stopped, the magpie turned the blackbird on to its belly, and removed feathers and pecked at its back and the back of its head. The magpie vigorously defended the blackbird when a different subadult magpie approached, and then continued to feed on the blackbird.

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