Footy and the Birds

I’m sitting here watching another match of Australian Rules Football (for some reason, my cable service in Busan carries a channel called Australian Network). In addition to players on the field, there are quite a lot of birds flying and diving amid the action. I’ve noticed this in the last few matches. I tried to google the information but got a boat-load of advertisement sites lacking on why.

So, my query for those in the know is: Why are there so many birds trying to play footy at the same time and in the same place as the humans?

A couple of reasons, as I understand it:

If the match is being held at night, the lights can attract bugs, which the birds have learned are good eating. Seagulls seem to make this connection more than most.

There’s also the thing that in Melbourne there’s Etihad Stadium which is literally a drop punt from Melbourne’s Docklands, and the MCG is not much further inland. The MCG has lots of seagulls around during the summer cricket season too.

Thanks. That makes perfect sense.

If you are talking of games played this weekend, there is a lot of wild weather about.

The seagulls etc head inland for a bit of shelter, and being scavengers the lure of chips and other food scraps makes it an attractive option.

Where do you think the expression,“Give him the Bird” comes from.