Wednesday 20 March 2024

Predatory Magpies

On many occasions I have found toad skins in the mudflats of the Xiang river and wondered whether it was magpies, egrets or other culprits have been eating their insides before discarding the poisonous skins. After reviewing some old photographs I noticed that I had captured an oriental magpie (pica serica, 喜鹊) in the act of catching toad at Taozi lake last April.
Oriental Magpie Catching a Toad

Last month I observed an azure-winged magpie (cyanopica cyanus, 灰喜鹊) catch a rat in the grasses near the Xiang river. Magpies of all kinds are fascinating to observe and certainly innovative in their acquisition of grub.
Azure-winged Magpie Catching a Rat