Pied Currawong - Strepera graculina

Pied Currawong

Strepera graculina

Family: Artamidae (Woodswallows, Butcherbirds, Currawongs, 15 species in Australia)
Size: 41-51 cm
Distribution: Southeast Australia within a few hundred km from the coast.
Status: Locally Abundant to Common
Habitat: Open and low open forest, woodland, scrub, agricultural and urban land
References: Simpson and Day, Reader's Digest

The Pied Currawong is one of the most commonly seen and heard birds in the areas where it lives. It is sometimes mistaken for the Australian Magpie, which is closely related (it is in the same family and subfamily) .However the Currawong is larger, has less white markings on it, and it does not attack people. It also has a yellow eye while the Magpie has a red eye.

Also unlike the Magpie, Pied Currawongs sometimes gather in huge "Currawong Parties", where as many as 100 birds will hang out together, making loud "wheeeeeeew wheeeeeee-EEEEEE-w" noises as well as theis usual call which (if you have a good imagination) sounds a bit like the word "currawong".

There is a different species, the Grey Currawong, which is similar but grey in colour rather than black.

Pied Currawong - Strepera graculina
Photo: Wentworth Falls, Blue Mountains NSW

Pied Currawong - Strepera graculina
Photo: Wentworth Falls, Blue Mountains NSW

Pied Currawong - Strepera graculina
Artwork: John Gould, 'The Birds of Australia', 1848. Original Scanned Image.

Some Birdwatching Resources


Field Guide to Australian Birds: Complete Compact Edition, by Michael Morcombe NEW: Field Guide to Australian Birds: Complete Compact Edition, by Michael Morcombe. Based on the above larger book. It's a while since I've seen this one. The publisher's commentary says that "This slimline, compact edition contains the same information on mainland and Tasmanian birds as his best-selling handbook, the Field Guide to Australian Birds. Features include plastic jacket, QuickFind system of colour tags and Quick Index ensure durability and ease of use in the field."

Purchase from Australia (Booktopia)

Purchase from Australia (Angus & Robertson)


Birdsong, Don Stap Birdsong, Don Stap. From the promotional material: "Following one of the world's experts on birdsong from the woods of Martha's Vineyard to the tropical forests of Central America, Don Stap brings to life the quest to unravel an ancient mystery: Why do birds sing and what do their songs mean? We quickly discover that one question leads to another. Why does the chestnut-sided warbler sing one song before dawn and another after sunrise? Why does the brown thrasher have a repertoire of two thousand songs when the chipping sparrow has only one? And how is the hermit thrush able to sing a duet with itself, producing two sounds simultaneously to create its beautiful, flutelike melody?"

Purchase from Australia (Booktopia)

Click here to purchase from Australia (Fishpond)

Click here to purchase from Wilderness Awareness School $24.00 USD (May not work)

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Pied Currawong - Strepera graculina

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