Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Magpie: Communication

The magpie’s large size, distinctive coloring, and long tail make her unmistakable. A clever bird, she can survive in a variety of habitats. As a member of the crow family, this striking bird shares their sharp intelligence.

The name “magpie” comes from the Old English: mag, which means “chatterbox”, and pie, which means “both black and white.” Extremely gregarious, the magpie travels and nests in colonies. Her raucous “chaw-chaw-chaw-chaw” inundates the woods when she fights with other magpies over food and nesting sites.

An omnivorous eater, the magpie will consume anything she finds on the ground. Many people dislike the magpie because she steals grain, seeds, and berries. In addition, she scavenges dead animals and steals other birds’ eggs. Like her brother crow, the magpie digs holes to hide her food.

The magpie demonstrates the mixed blessing of being a noted communicator. Talk is welcomed in most places, while gossip is not. Be careful what you say to others. Be quiet, and listen once in a while.

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