A terrified boy has been filmed fleeing on a scooter while an aggressive magpie repeatedly attacked him in broad daylight.
The clip, which was taken by the boy's father, went viral and attracted more than a million views after it was shared on Instagram.
Wayne Sherwood captured a magpie diving out of the sky and relentlessly attacking his son Max, who was riding down a road in Wollongong, News South Wales in Australia.
Little Max is seen crouching down on his green scooter and screaming in fear as he tries to dodge the bird.
Wayne can be heard laughing from behind the camera while watching his son zoom past in front of him.
He wrote on his post: "Australia is beautiful but our native birds are killers. They'll eat your kids alive. Beware haha."
But the clip sparked a mixed response online, with some viewers criticising the parent.
"The kid will be traumatised of birds for the rest of his life," one said.
Another wrote: "This is not funny! The boy was going to make an accident and injure himself while you are laughing and enjoying how your son is screaming."
Another one said: "Great parenting, to allow your child to be scared like that while you're filming!"
Some saw it as a fun experience for little Max.
"Haha it's a good character building exercise," a viewer commented.
A second joked: "That's how I teach my kids to ride faster."
The black and white songbirds are known to become aggressive during their breeding season, which is usually between September and October in Australia, and attack humans or animals near their nests.
Their swooping actions are to protect their territory while the chicks are nesting nearby.
Experts at the South Australian Department of the Environment said the easiest way to avoid being swooped is to change your walking route, as magpies will only defend the territory within 50 metres of the nest, reported 9 News.
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