MM – Something to crow about

First, a hat tip to Bonnie Raitt for the post title (and apologies to everyone for the unintentional ear worm). *grin*

I think by now everyone knows that I love crows (as evidenced here, and here, as well as here, and not forgetting here). I’ve spent the past year and a half trying to bribe the local crows so that they’d pose for pictures. This past Wednesday, all the bread and peanuts finally paid off – there’s a crow I now call, “Angel” (thanks to his pose at the end of this blog post) who has decided that it’s now okay for me to hang around outside when he’s eating.

Here’s a half dozen of the gazillion pictures I’ve taken since his decision on Wednesday –

Crow breakfast
Crow breakfast
Hiding his raisin bread
Hiding his raisin bread
Tidying up a bit
Tidying up a bit
Preening
Preening
Shake yer tail feather
Shake yer tail feather
Smile for the camera
Smile for the camera

And here’s a few of our conversations –

March 26th – Talking to Angel the Crow (1 minute, 38 seconds) –

March 27th – Angel the Crow makes some clicking noises (24 seconds) –

March 27th – Angel the Crow plays Simon Says (3 minutes, 7 seconds) –

As for that clicking noise in that video, I spent a little time researching what it might mean, and this is my favorite (if unsubstantiated) explanation so far. It was in answer to a Facebook query by someone named Beth Wilks – “According to Candace Savage, author of Crows: encounters with the wise guys, and also Bird Brains: the intelligence of ravens, crows, magpies and jays, it is used to acknowledge familial association.” In other words, he’s welcomed me into the family. Or he was telling his crow family that the crazy bread lady was back. Either way, I’m enjoying it.

Something to crow about #MicroblogMondays
“Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is?
Read the inaugural post which explains
the idea and how you can participate too.”
~ Melissa S. Ford, Stirrup Queens

24 comments

    • Thank you, Beth! He showed up again this morning, but since it’s pouring rain, I left his raisin bread in his usual spot, whistled good morning, and skedaddled back inside. I think he understood. πŸ˜€

  1. Crows are amazing! My husband and I have enjoyed watching them for years. I have once had a crow take a piece of bread from my hand. I stretched my hand out as far as I could and turned my head the other way. It hopped to the back of the bench, took the bread and was GONE! lol My daughter (1yr in a couple of days) is so intrigued with crows/birds right now. She spots all birds while outside and caws.
    Your photos are beautiful. I love the first on this page and angel crow.

    • That’s an awesome story, Heather! Thanks so much for sharing it with me. I used to caw at the crows too, but it felt too silly for me, so I started whistling instead. I hope your baby girl keeps crowing at the birds – I wouldn’t be surprised if they suddenly started to crow back!

      And thank you!

  2. That’s really interesting. I used to make bird noises when a bird in the tree was chirping but there was no response like the type you have filmed. Nowadays, I just keep quiet and enjoy the birds singing.

    • Sometimes I whistle back to the other birds, but it’s mainly the crows I try to interact with. But for almost a year, every time I’m out refilling my feeders, I whistle three times, pause, and then three more times, hoping they recognize the signal for food. Since Angel did a similar call to me in the third video, I get the feeling they got the hint. πŸ˜€

  3. There is a large study happening at my old institution on crows. Specifically their behavior patterns and how they interact with humans. They are insanely smart creatures (sometimes too smart for the good of the humans they are interacting with).

    It’s clear Angel trusts you based on how close you’re getting and the conversation you’re having. Would not be surprised if you start getting shiny gifts.

    • That sounds like an incredible study, Cristy. I’ve read bunches of behavior studies on different websites, and it confirms what I’ve long suspected – they’re actually the ones training me, not the other way around. πŸ˜‰

      Just the fact that he’s hanging around and letting me snap pictures is a shiny enough gift for me. But if he starts leaving me anything, I’ll be sure to shout out.

  4. Gorgeous birds, never heard that clicking noise before! They’re highly intelligent. Have you ever watched The Secret Life of Birds with David Attenborough? There’s some crows in that series…very clever πŸ™‚

    • I’m pretty sure I’ve seen the crow bits of The Secret Life of Birds – I have some awesome friends who regularly share amazing crow videos they’ve found on my FB wall. They’re truly marvelous creatures (the crows and my friends – LOL!).

Feel free to shout out!

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