In early spring, many Australians start scanning the skies for a crazy black and white bundle of feathers.
It's coming into breeding season for the Australian magpie ( Gymnorhina tibicen) .......
and when it is breeding season this normally friendly bird turns ....
into a crazed attacker !
When you are walking innocently along the street, you never know when one of these crazed magpies will swoop and attack.
They are fiercely protecting their nest.
It doesn't matter if you are young or old, no-one is safe from the magpie !
Kids walking home from schyool.......
Postmen are a particular target.
There are even signs out in park areas to warn people when there is a particularly crazy one around.
People design and wear all sorts of protective hats.
Many of us have childhood memories of aggressive magpies.
A national survey has found that 90 per cent of males and 72 per cent of females have been attacked by a magpie at some time in their life!
There are hundreds of video clips like this one on youtube showing magpies attacking.
Luckily the breeding season only lasts for about six weeks then the magpies go back to being the lovely birds whose fantastic songs so typify the Australian outdoors.