Magpie attack proves fatal for elderly man

Time of article published Sep 5, 2003

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Melbourne - An Australian man died this week after having his eyes pecked by a broody magpie, hospital officals in Melbourne said on Friday.

The 74-year-old suffered a serious eye injury after he was swooped upon by the bird in Mildura in north-west Victoria state last week.

He was operated on at Melbourne's Royal Eye and Ear Hospital, but collapsed and died in the hospital on Wednesday.

Hospital chief executive officer Graeme Houghton said the cause of his death had not been released and the matter was before the coroner.

It was believed the man suffered from a pre-existing medical condition.

The magpie, which also caused serious eye injuries to a 27-year-old South Korean tourist, was shot by environment department officals on Friday.

Magpies aggressively swoop passers-by in spring to protect their chicks. - Sapa-AFP

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