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Australian Magpie


Quick Facts

Scientific name: Cracticus tibicen
Class: Bird
Length: 14.5 to 17.0 inches (36.0 to 44.0 centimeters)
Wingspan: 25.5 to 33.5 inches (65.0 to 85.0 centimeters)
Weight: 6.3 ounces
Life span: 25 years
Number of eggs: 2 to 6 eggs
Conservation status: Stable


May I have some more?

In Australia, wild magpies search the ground for insects and receive hand-outs from humans. Some have even become comfortable enough with people that they will fly into their houses to beg for food!

Sweet and sour

During most of the year, Australian magpies are friendly creatures, but when it comes to breeding season, Magpies aggressively protect their territory. They will swoop down on anything they believe is a threatening predator.  Looking directly at an Australian magpie decreases the likelihood that they will become aggressive.

Walk it out

Most birds hop or waddle around when they are not flying. Magpies’ legs are long and muscular and built for fast walking to chase prey on the ground.

All grown up

Young Australian magpies don’t stay in their nests very long. Approximately three weeks after hatching, most magpies will be out hunting for food on their own. Some of these birds will beg for food for nine months before seeking it on their own.

Sing it, magpie

Australian magpies are named Cracticus tibicen for their singing. Tibicen means “flautist.” These birds can be heard singing beautiful warbles early in the morning throughout rural Australian.



Learn more about our efforts, our conservation partners around the world, and the simple steps you can take to contribute.