Friday, January 23, 2009

Misleading Title

This raven chick isn't wild. This appears to be a rest stop or maybe a campground. It's likely he's an abandoned pet, or has become tamed in his experience scrounging from resting motorists.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Smart Crooks

Proving that crows do recognize each other, Renee Ha has observed that they use different tactics when stealing food from each other, depending on whether the dupe is a relative, neighbor, or outsider:

When the birds are related a crow will
use a passive strategy and walk up to
or kind of sidle next to the bird with
the food. Often the second bird will
give up the food to the scrounger.
With aggressive scrounging, there
is usually a flying approach by the
thief who nearly lands on the other
bird. This can be followed by vocalization,
physical contact and attempts to take the
food. Usually it also involves chasing
and avoidance by the bird with the food.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Alien Abductions

As a man of science I do appreciate the need for study. But I cannot help but sympathize with the family of crows panicking while we kidnap their young for metrics and tagging.

Sedating them might be the better option, but we really aren't clear if the after-affects might not be harmful, especially for the chicks.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Corvidae homini

It's easy to anthropomorphize the crow.
He's bold and adventurous, and he talks - a lot.
So when we see painting of him acting like a man,
it's because we see so much of ourselves in him.