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Re: Magpie mayhem

At 11:29 AM 8/15/2004, kustom66 wrote:
How can Aussie magpies not be related to crows, let alone other maggies?? We have crows here too. Are they not the same as N.H. crows?

As I mentioned before, they are related to currawongs and butcherbirds - they are only called "magpies" because they are, like Pica magpies, black-and-white (but not glossy, as I recall). Australian "robins" aren't related to European or American robins, either - in fact most Australian songbirds belong to a radiation of bird families pretty much confined to the region. Australian crows and ravens are, however, really members of the crow family and the genus Corvus, as Northern Hemisphere crows are.

And yes, of course I know that Australian magpies attack people - it's just that they aren't "real" magpies. And White-eared Honeyeaters will land on your head and try to pull your hair out for nesting material - one used to do that to me regularly in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney.

Ronald I. Orenstein Phone: (905) 820-7886
International Wildlife Coalition Fax/Modem: (905) 569-0116
1825 Shady Creek Court
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada L5L 3W2 mailto:ron.orenstein@rogers.com