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Black-billed Magpies

Heber, UT is filled with magpies.  I love them so much.  This picture of one strutting shows the essence of a magpie.

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Juvenile magpies are the biggest babies.  They look just the adults except they go around begging for food.  It always amuses me to see parents patiently feeding juveniles that they know full well could get their own food.  In these pictures the parent is feeding the baby larvae straight from the tree.  In the second picture you can see the larvae in the baby’s mouth.  The juveniles have light-blue eyes and because I’m so used to the adults having black eyes, it makes the juvenile look a little crazy to me.

 

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Fortunately, the baby eventually caught on to finding his own food.

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We went back to Heber this weekend and there was a very loud juvenile by the cabin.  They really sound like whiny teenagers.  This one was so loud I found his restring area on the side of a mountain.

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They’re such smart birds.  I saw this guy trying to get at some more larvae by taking these hard brown things and poking at a nest.  He was using tools!

 

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2 Responses to “Black-billed Magpies”

  1. Tiffany says:

    So cool – he is most definitely using tools!!!

    In the top photos, he still has a little bit of the bright “gums” on the side of his beak. Great pictures with the larva!

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Aw baby! I missed the gums.