Of Crows




Our neighborhood, thus where my wife and I walk, isn’t infested by crows, but there’s enough continuous crow activity to be noticed. I’ve seen Murders of crows, but most of the time I see them in groups of three. [Yes, three crows can be a Murder!]
Crow watching is usually in my back yard, so I don’t concentrate on crow activity while we walk, but what they do isn’t just background either.
Crows seem to be like cats – no one can tell them what to do.
Crows seem to be like dogs – they claim territory and loudly let other beings know when that their claimed territory is being approached.
Crows seem to be like sharks – they’ll eat anything.
Crows seem to be like fraternity brothers or sorority sisters – they stick together.
Crows seem to be quite assertive, even to the level of aggressive bullying – I’ve seen them in groups of three, chasing a lone hawk. Wonder if they’ll chase an owl or eagle? Don’t they know raptors can kill even larger critters with talons and beak.
Crows seem to have military like organization of duties – one appears to stand apart as if on sentry duty while the other two eat – rotation of duty seem almost as if scheduled. Fairly often I see a pair of them chasing a squirrel away from a buried nut or other goody in my back yard while one watches from the fence.
Crows can’t kill a squirrel or other small animal on their own, so they take positions and chase a squirrel into the street as a vehicle approaches. [A Murder of crows murders a squirrel?] I’ve never seen a crow kill anything to eat except a worm or grub from a lawn after rain or a recent watering. This morning I saw six crows (note the second multiple of three) pulling apart the body of a small animal, probably a squirrel, well smashed on the street. Those guys must have been really hungry – there wasn’t a visible lookout.
I didn’t take it personally when they ate my corn seeds. I just consider that’s what they do alone or team up with others in their Murder. Considering my planting, It’s my job to out cleaver them, not theirs to change natural behavior.
I have to admit, however, I have thought about the murder of a Murder.
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