Wednesday 21 October 2009

Magpies, the annual spring menace - a solution to stop swooping!

Man I hate getting swooped by magpies. That rush of air and snap as it cracks your helmet is seriously scary. I've almost stacked on my bike a number of times by trying to outrun the magpie at top speed, turn a corner, and wave my hand above my head at the same time. I've got the cable ties all over my helmet (yes, car drivers, that's what they are for!) but they still swoop. At best they just swoop a bit higher up, away from your head.

Thank god for the CSIRO, who have tried a whole lot of approaches and found one that works!! Basically it turns out (at least in this video) magpies won't swoop if you aren't wearing a helmet. Unfortunately not wearing a bike helmet is illegal, so what you need to do is get a wig big enough to fit over your helmet :)

Not sure this is 100% effective, because people get swooped on foot, and they aren't wearing helmets. I guess you could always do cable ties and a wig.

Can't wait for the end of magpie season...

Update: Apparently it is the shininess of the helmet the magpies go for. I ripped the shiny stuff off my helmet and didn't get swooped, but I think the season is probably over for the year since there were others with shiny helmets on the path and they didn't get swooped. Till next year!

1 comment:

Lydia said...

I think that you would look fantastic with a sassy blonde wig over your helmet, and should wear it all year round.

You know, I kinda miss the magpies. We don't have any animals over here that are out to kill us. Where's the excitement in that?