Stay clear of ‘pies this season

Spring has sprung and Latrobe Valley residents are being warned to keep an eye out for swooping birds during magpie breeding season.

Magpies have already begun swooping those perceived as a threat in a bid to defend their eggs.

The Department of Environ ment, Land, Water and Planning is encouraging people to notify others in their local area about swooping birds to build awareness about magpie hotspots.

In a statement, the department said magpies and masked lapwings (commonly known as plovers) would begin swooping this month and the behaviour would intensify in October.

The department has advised residents to avoid areas with nesting magpies and masked lapwings.

“Being swooped by a territorial bird can be a scary experience, but this is just normal bird behaviour and, if possible, the best solution is to keep away,” Energy, Environment and Climate Change Minister Lily D’Ambrosio said.

“If you do get swooped, or see a bird swooping, please report it on Victoria’s Magpie Map so the community knows about it and can try to avoid the area.”

Swooping incidents can be reported on the department’s website, where they will be added to a map which people can use to inform themselves about problems in their area.

Anyone who is swooped is encouraged to protect their head and eyes and move as quickly as possible through the area.

To report a magpie or masked lapwing swooping incident, visit the department’s website at