Magpie to be shot after attack

TWEED police have been directed to shoot the magpie responsible for the attack on a schoolgirl in Tweed Heads South last week.

The magpie struck the girl on her head on Thursday in a nature corridor behind Industrial Dr.

NSW National Parks and Wildlife Services confirmed they gave the direction to police on Friday.

Mr Croft, the father of the girl who was attacked by the magpie last week, said he was satisfied with the outcome.

Murwillumbah-based ranger Lance Tarvey said Mr Croft provided the department with enough evidence to warrant the magpie being destroyed.

"The bird actually struck his daughter, but most birds don't actually strike," Mr Tarvey said.

"We try and work our way through and with most birds you can manage.

"There's many more aggressive magpies that we deal with that don't get to this point."

An RSPCA NSW spokeswoman said magpies were protected native species in Australia and it was illegal to kill or harm them.

"So the RSPCA wouldn't condone attacking, throwing things or otherwise trying to harm a bird that's showing signs of aggression, as this is illegal," she said.

Chief inspector David OShannessy said the RSPCA did not have a specific position on the killing of magpies proven to have attacked people.

"The RSPCA is not opposed to the control of pest species," Mr OShannessy said.

"There must be a demonstrated issue and it should be carried out by government agencies."

He said he was satisfied there were sufficient checks and balances in place and stressed the importance of a humane killing.

"It comes down to the competency of the person carrying it out," he said.

Tweed Heads police Inspector Darren Steel said a request had been received for an authorised police officer to shoot the magpie.

"However there was nobody there so they'll have to put in a request and they'll go from there," he said.

Mr Tarvey said destroying magpies was a last resort.

"Most people have been swooped by magpies and this is the month for them," he said.

"We ask people to be as tolerant as possible."


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