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Oh Those Crows

 I’d like to give my thoughts on the overabundance of crows we have in the Seattle area. I know they’re birds and deserve their place, but what the Hell is going on? First I’ll give you some info on them, then blast away!

 

                Crows are large passerine birds that form the genus Corvus in the family Corvidae. Ranging in size from the relatively small pigeon-size jackdaws (Eurasian and Daurian) to the Common Raven of the Holarctic region and Thick-billed Raven of the highlands of Ethiopia, the 40 or so members of this genus occur on all temperate continents (except South America) and several offshore and oceanic islands (including Hawaii). In the United States and Canada, the word “crow” is used to refer to the American Crow.[citation needed]

The crow genus makes up a third of the species in the Corvidae family. Other corvids includerooks and jays. Crows appear to have evolved in Asia from the corvid stock, which had evolved in Australia. A group of crows is called a flock or a murder.[1]

Recent research has found some crow species capable not only of tool use but of tool construction as well.[2] Crows are now considered to be among the world’s most intelligent animals.[3] The Jackdaw and (along with its fellow corvid, the European Magpie) has been found to have a neostriatum approximately the same relative size as is found in chimpanzees and humans, and significantly larger than is found in the gibbon.[4]

 

*Well all of that is very interesting, the key thing i noticed is they are very smart, so smart they seemed to have chased away other kinds of birds from around where I have lived for the past 14 years. I have no scientific proof, if that’s what you’re hoping to hear, but it’s been a gradual kind of thing.


 

 

Robins are one that have diminished in numbers, but the most noticeable are the Bluejays, I haven’t seen one this year and saw  only one or two last year. Why you might wonder?  I do too and I still wonder, and would like to get to the bottom of this. They both have similar caws, a bit annoying at times, but the Jay is more pleasing to the sight. The Bluejays don’t do the “ugly” all over your car, your windshield or your whatever. It’s disgusting!

I am aware that Crows seem to not have much fear of humans or any other bird their size or smaller either. They are definitely  well fed, sure wish the neighbors would keep their lid on their garbage. Those things can make a pure mess while foraging for food in a trash receptacle, Yikes!

Well I hope this might help us understand why the population explosion of crows is happening. In fact it’s more common in the Pacific NW than anywhere else in the States, I might be embellishing that a bit, but it’s more dramatic that way. The cause is general urbanization, yep, while the rich keep getting richer, we keep having babies. We are actually feeding into the crows plan. Remember they are very intelligent!

From studies of crows and all of there breeding, bird people (that’s a technical term) have studied the nests. Crows  have more invertebrates and small invertebrates in their nests than any other bird in our area, not to mention they found our junk in them too! The disappearance or smaller number of the Bluejays I think can be partially explained by the fact that even though both are human commensals,that means they depend on you and I for their food sources, the crows are beating the others to it. For all I know they are robbing the Jays nests and eating their eggs or young. Downright  cannibals they could be.

But the crows do some good things too;

[A crow family can eat 40,000 grubs, caterpillars, army worms, and other insects in one nesting season. That’s a lot of insects many gardeners and farmers consider pests. These good environmental citizens also transport and store seeds, thus contributing to forest renewal. And their habit of eating carrion makes them part of nature’s cleanup crew.]

My friend Wiki wrote that for me, he knows way more about this than I ever wanted to!

So just get used to them, they’re going to hang close to wherever we and the grubs are. Get prepared for wearing gloves when you go out to start your car and possibly doing the car wash more often.

They aren’t so bad after all, but I sure miss seeing the Bluejays around here. Oh well, that’s survival of the fittest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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