Home' The Canberra Times : Chronicle 6.9 Contents THE CHRONICLE, Tuesday, September 6 2011 - 3
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THE RSPCA has intervened after a
group of Narrabundah residents re-
ceived an obscene letter threatening to
kill their pets.
The letter, which was handed to The
Chronicle by a concerned resident last
week, suggested the sender was fed up
with his neighbours walking their dogs
on his lawn.
To the residents in his street he
wrote, "any dog I catch on any part of
my lawn I will gladly slit its throat."
He also referred to his neighbours as
"disrespectful c***s", signed the letter,
and included his address.
RSPCA ACT chief executive
Michael Linke said he was well aware
of the letter after receiving a number of
complaints about it.
"We're sickened by it ... we're fol-
lowing up with complaints and inves-
tigating the matter," he said.
"We'd like to sit down and talk to
him about the appropriate avenues you
can follow without doing something
"There's channels through the ACT
Government through Domestic Ani-
mal Services whereby you can make
"I also think sitting down over a
coffee is a great way to solve most of
Mr Linke said he was disgusted by
the language used in the letter and the
proposed actions detailed.
"This is the problem with our
society sometimes, with people think-
ing they can take matters into their own
hands," he said.
A spokeswoman from ACT Policing
said they were aware of the letter.
"We are not investigating the inci-
dent as no recipients of the letter have
made an official complaint to police,"
ever a com-
plaint must be
Swooping season begins in capital
ACT urban ranger Craig Wainwright puts up signs warning people to
be aware of swooping magpies.
Picture: Elesa Lee
ICE-CREAM containers worn as
hats, unusual looking bike helmets
and the unseasonal use of umbrellas
may be common sights over the next
few weeks, as magpie swooping
season sets in.
While they are usually quite gentle
birds, for six weeks of the year
magpies become aggressive and
territorial in an attempt to safeguard
Parks and reserves ranger Nadia
Kuzmanoski confirmed that
Canberra magpies had begun their
protective behaviour, which included
"The season usually starts kicking
in at the end of July, but it can start
earlier or later depending on the
weather. We've found it pretty much
started mid-August this year," she
"The best thing is not to aggravate
the birds ... if you just leave them
alone, they'll leave you alone.
"If you have to walk through an
area with magpies, walk quickly, but
don't run, as the momentum can set
them off as well."
Ms Kuzmanoski suggested using
an umbrella as protection or wearing
"It sounds silly but pasting eyes on
the back of your hat or helmet can act
as a deterrent. They're less likely to
swoop you if they think you're
watching them," she said.
"Most magpies won't swoop
people; they find us too big of a
target. Nine out of 10 birds won't
Ms Kuzmanoski said the magpie
population was quite large in
Canberra, due to the capital's large
green spaces with plenty of gardens
"So we really are encouraging
magpies to come to Canberra," she
"Our main area of concern is
around schools, aged care facilities
and shopping centres, because the
population is so high with lots of
people coming through."
While Kuzmanoski admitted the
season was a bit of a hassle, she said
Canberrans need only be wary of
magpies for about six weeks.
She said it was best to avoid
troublesome areas if possible, and to
refrain from throwing things at the
birds. "If people think there is a
particular bird in a particular area that
is causing problems for them, they
can report it and we will get in touch
with them and put signs up," she said.
To report a troublesome magpie,
call Canberra Connect on 132281.
Contents of a note placed in the
letterboxes of a Narrabundah
don't let it on my grass again. Any
dog I catch on any part of my lawn
I will gladly slit its throat. I am sick
and tired of stepping in a picking
up your dogs (sic) mess you
disrespectful c***s. If you would
like to test me your (sic) more than
welcome. Just make sure you give
him a good farewell before you
head to my house.
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