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All information gathered first-hand, since 1995

Pica pica   –   Pie Bavarde

magpie photo The Magpie is very distinctive: dark black and bright white, with a long tail. The black includes a purple-bluish gloss on the body feathers and a greenish gloss on the tail feathers.

The French name "Bavarde", meaning someone who doesn't stop talking, also describes the Magpie, as you'll often here its loud chattering even before you see it. On the ground, the Magpie often hops sideways as well as walking. Similar in character to the Amrican blue jay (noisy and often around where there are people).


46 cm


likes trees, but is often around farms and villages. The nest is a large dome of twigs and small branches.

[ Photo from The Complete Morris's British Birds 1891, scanned by Ash Midcalf ]