Magpie attack lands man with shattered bones
A DEDICATED vegan stalked by a malevolent magpie for months has undergone urgent surgery after a torpedo swoop landed him in hospital with a shattered wrist and an uncharacteristic urge to wring a bird's neck.
Atherton man Ryan Priestley stopped riding his bike up Tinaroo Falls Dam Rd to the nursery he works at about two months ago after continually being attacked by a territorial maggie.
"He's had it in for me for a long time," he said.
"I used to get attacked all the time."
The gardener risked a reconnaissance mission about a week ago and was pleasantly surprised when the wicked warbler was nowhere in sight.
Hopeful it may have lost interest or taken up new lodgings, he saddled up on his pushie the following day and pedalled off to work.
His worst fears soon set in.
"I was on the road to get to the nursery and it came at me from the side," he explained.
"I saw it coming - it was like a javelin straight at my ear - and I just s*** myself.
"I ducked and wove and ended up crashing in the middle of the road.
"It was the most excruciating pain I've ever felt."
Mr Priestley received a displaced intra-articular distal radius fracture - basically, his wrist was buggered.
He went under the surgeon's knife on Monday to have a titanium plate screwed into his bones.
Video taken in the hospital room shows him making liberal use of, and rather enjoying, the laughing gas painkiller nozzle by his bedside.
Mr Priestley, who gave up eating meat about four years ago, said his compassion for animals did not extend to this evil-minded creature.
"I've done a lot of research about them," he said.
"They can live for up to 30 years and they are some of the most intelligent animals on earth.
"They can actually identify themselves in a mirror and are able to remember certain people."
He believed his magpie attacker knew his face and wanted his blood.
"I would just about go non-vegan a day to kill the bugger," he joked.
"Except I'm not actually going to do that because it's illegal."
Mr Priestley has a long road to recovery ahead.
In the meantime, his airborne assailant is still out there, ready to swoop again.
Mr Priestley wanted to stress he was only joking about eating the magpie, which was just carrying out its evolutionary prerogative.