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Thursday, April 25, 2024

New signs signal swooping season

Brisbane residents are being encouraged to stay alert and take precautions this swooping bird season, with new warning signs being rolled out across the city and suburbs.

Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner today urged residents to report serious swooping incidents as he launched the new signage.

He said the signs and a more stringent approach towards removing highly aggressive birds came after a review prompted by last year’s tragic accident in Glindemann Park.

“I know some people won’t agree with Council’s approach of having aggressive birds relocated,” Cr Schrinner said.

“However, these birds can be dangerous, and we are determined to put people first.”

The new bright yellow swooping sign, which have been designed to be simple and highly visible, have been rolled out in locations across Brisbane to coincide with peak swooping season from September.

“We really want people to notice these signs so they can take the necessary precautions,” Cr Schrinner said.

“Birds swoop to protect their young from potential threats, particularly as they begin the process of learning to fly.

The new signs erected across Brisbane.

“If you see a warning sign in a park or along a pathway, try and avoid this area, especially during the upcoming swooping peak.

“If you must travel in the area wear a hat or use an umbrella, wear sunglasses, dismount off your bike and never panic and run if you are swooped.”

Since the review of Council’s swooping bird management plan, independent species-specific experts have removed 16 highly-aggressive birds, including 11 magpies and 5 butcherbirds.

All native birds are protected under the Queensland Government Nature Conservation Act 1992 and there are serious penalties for taking, harassing, or injuring native wildlife.

“Once Council is aware swooping is occurring the location is carefully monitored by our officers,” Cr Schrinner said.

“If further complaints occur or there’s an indication that a bird’s behaviour is escalating, we engage experts to undertake an assessment and remove the bird, if required.

“We’re encouraging residents to let us know where swooping is occurring so officers can monitor birds and act when required.”

To report a swooping bird call Council immediately on 3403 8888. 

Precautions to take this swooping season: 

  • Avoid the swoop area during breeding season.  
  • Travel in a group. Most birds only swoop individuals. 
  • Do not panic and run, as this only encourages a swooping bird to continue its attack. 
  • Wear a hat or use an umbrella over your head to keep a swooping bird at a safe distance. 
  • Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes
  • Cyclists should dismount and walk away from the swooping zone. 

Things to avoid: 

  • Do not deliberately provoke birds as this may make them more aggressive. 
  • Do not destroy nests as the birds may re-nest and extend the breeding season.  
  • Do not feed or try to befriend swooping birds. 

For more information, visit brisbane.qld.gov.au and search ‘swooping birds’ and ‘fledgling birds’.

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