Interspecies friendship: bird and d*g

Reader Andrey sent me this video of a d*g (Canis lupus familiaris) and an Australian magpie (Cracticus tibicen) playing. Don’t ask me more: all YouTube says is that one is named Sqwark (guess which?) and the other Whiskey.

I can hear a cat somewhere in the background, as well as the call of the Australian Human (“Where’s my beer?”)

There’s a second video by the same folks here.


  1. Merilee
    Posted January 13, 2014 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    The bird’s very helpful with the laundry hanging:-)

  2. JBlilie
    Posted January 13, 2014 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    The Australian magpie is an amazing beast. They have a wonderful call as well.

    • js
      Posted January 13, 2014 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

      Oh yes, the magpie call is wonderful, but for some reason I don’t get them at my place.
      There are plenty of crows and kookaburras and sometimes black cockatoos which have the most soul wrenching call I have ever heard (if souls existed of course).

  3. Posted January 13, 2014 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

    Amazing videos! It is a wonder this horseplay (if I may) hasn’t resulted in a broken leg or wing. The d*g is obviously very gentle even if lively.

    • Achrachno
      Posted January 13, 2014 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

      Yes, I was surprised to that the bird has not been injured. It could easily have been — it seems the dog is treating it as it would a young puppy, or something like that.

  4. hank_says
    Posted January 13, 2014 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    I love magpies. They’re everywhere here in Oz, from scrub to suburb, but they’re still one of my favourite birds – they’re clever like the corvids they slightly resemble (although they’re cracticinae), familial and have the most beautiful and unmistakable call. They’re not shy either, with wild ones frequently striking up relationships with humans – my wife’s mother feeds them, along with kookaburras and butcher birds, mincemeat at her kitchen door (she buys the meat especially for “her” birds).

    Of course, being Australian animals, they also have a vicious side – during nesting season they’ll dive-bomb you if you walk too close to their home tree. They mean business too – their sharp, pointy beaks aren’t just for finding worms in your lawn and I’ve seen some proper puncture wounds on people’s heads during the spring. In some areas it gets so bad that kids walk to school with bike helmets on.

    A note: the bird in the video has grey plumage on its back, which means either that it’s a mature female or a juvenile (mature males lose their grey and end up just black and white). I like to think it’s the latter and what we’re seeing is two puppies having a rumble 🙂

    • BilBy
      Posted January 13, 2014 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

      They are great birds, but yes, they can be vigorous nest defenders and have inflicted serious wounds on people. Bike helmets with googly eyes on, or with springy ‘horns’ are a relatively common sight in Perth in the nesting season

    • Diane G.
      Posted January 13, 2014 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

      “… they’re clever like the corvids they slightly resemble (although they’re cracticinae)”

      So glad you mentioned that–I’d just been assuming they were corvids. (Since then I’ve googled them.) Indeed, very corvid-like with the play, curiosity, & intelligence!

    • js
      Posted January 13, 2014 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

      As a child I lived across the road from a private girls school and it had a very large park out the front with many tall eucalypts.
      One spring I went out to the front yard and had a magpie swoop and peck me on the head which drew blood.
      Many years later when I would run to work I would often have to change my route depending on where they were nesting.

  5. Diego
    Posted January 13, 2014 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    Loved seeing maggies when I visited Oz!

  6. haymanj
    Posted January 13, 2014 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

    Must be an Irish dog, hence spelling ‘Whiskey’.

  7. HaggisForBrains
    Posted January 14, 2014 at 3:23 am | Permalink

    That puppy has the cutest ears!

  8. M'thew
    Posted January 15, 2014 at 1:51 am | Permalink

    OK, another one (maybe not new to everyone, but I can’t see it in this thread, and it has a cat):

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