Significance to humans

No magpie-shrikes have made a significant impact on humans except for the Australian magpie. This species, which is widely appreciated in Australia for its fearlessness and caroling song, is cultivated around rural properties and fed in urban areas, and has been introduced successfully to New Zealand, the Solomon Islands (Guadalcanal), Fiji (Taveuni),

A black butcherbird (Cracticus quoyi) in the rainforest of northern Queensland, Australia. (Photo by Michael Fogden/Animals Animals. Reproduced by permission.)

and several offshore Australian islands. When breeding, rogue males can become a problem, diving to attack children and others. The skulking pied currawong (Strepera graculina) has also invaded towns and cities along the east coast of Australia, impacting on smaller birds of all species by robbing nests and taking newly fledged young.

1. Gray butcherbird (Cracticus torquatus); 2. Female Bornean bristlehead (Pityriasis gymnocephala); 3. Pied currawong (Strepera graculina); 4. Clicking peltops (Peltops blainvillii); 5. Australian magpie (Gymnorhina tibicen). (Illustration by Dan Erickson)

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