Time to keep an eye to the sky - magpie swooping season is with us.
An Illawarra resident had a near-miss with a swooping bird near the university on Hoskins Street in Gwynneville on Monday afternoon.
Across town, a three-year-old child was not so lucky.
A mother reported that her toddler was injured in a magpie attack on The Avenue in Mount St Thomas on August 1.
"Swooped by three magpies while outside our house," she wrote on the Magpie Alert! website.
"We are a family with young children. When I went outside I heard the magpie calls. Then I saw a shadow shortly after three magpies returned. At this time my oldest 3 year old, was swooped on the arm and has a bruise from one of the magpie."
A National Parks and Wildlife Service spokesman said the diving behaviour was the birds protecting their newborn chicks.
"Magpies start breeding as soon as conditions are suitable including when weather begins to warm up," a spokesman said.
"Magpies are very protective of their chicks. Some, but not all, magpies swoop anyone they see as an intruder in their territory.
"This protective behaviour lasts only a few weeks, so be prepared to avoid them, or risk being injured."
The swooping attacks of protective magpies has led to the creation of a a website designed to track and record attacks Australia-wide.
MagpieAlert.com allows people to log on and record where they have experienced a swooping, details about the attack and any injuries suffered.
People can then check the website, find out where attacks have happened and avoid the area.
In case anyone was thinking about taking out some drastic action after being swooped, the national park spokesman warned that magpies were a protected species and it was illegal to capture, harm or kill them.
It was also against the law to collect their eggs or harm their young.
The spokesman said the best thing people can do is avoid nesting areas.
If that wasn't possible people should walk past the area confidently, do not stop and watch the bird as they walk past.
A hat or bike helmet can help protect your head from the swooping magpies beak and sunglasses can do the same for your eyes.
Cyclists should get off their bike and quickly walk past.
Register magpie attacks here: MagpieAlert
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