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Magpies are dominant birds and are often seen as a threat to other wild birds. Many people wish to control magpies in their gardens because they take the eggs and chicks of other birds. However, research suggests that magpies do not pose the problem to garden birds that people think they do. The males can also become very aggressive in Spring when they have young to protect
It is illegal to kill magpies or destroy their nests unless you can demonstrate that they are a serious risk to public health and safety, and even then, you are required to apply for an individual licence to cull them. Trapping and shooting should be undertaken as a last resort and only where the legal conditions for it are met.