Crows have shiny jet black plumage with curious eyes, hoping gait, and a remarkable level of intelligence. Admonished as ill-omen, bad luck, or representation of evil; crows, on the contrary, are in fact very interesting birds, who perform some astounding feats with their cleverness and dexterity. It amazes most of the humans who often consider them as simple nuisance. These birds are so resilient and intelligent that they have been successful in outsmarting humans for accessing food from their domain. Their level of intelligence sets them apart from other birds! With more than 120 species, crows thrive in almost all the continents, other than Antartica. Crows belong to the genus Corvus in the family Corvidae. “Cawing” is the sound they make, and they have a sophisticated form of communication language. This bird deserves respect and admiration, but unfortunately, they are often misunderstood, maltreated, and misrepresented. Read on to find out more amazing facts about crows.
Scientific Name: Corvus brachyrhynchos
Number of Species: 31
Natural Habitat: Mixed habitat like woodlands, open areas, agricultural fields, coastal wetlands, etc.
Life Span: 7-8 years
Age of Sexual Maturity: 2 years
Size: Length: 16-18 inches
Wing Span 39 inches
Weight: 320-415 g
Number of Eggs: 4-7
Incubation Period: 16-18 days
Interesting & Amazing Facts About Crow
- Crows have the biggest brain to body ratio among all bird species. Evolved with a highly developed forebrain, where intelligence is regulated, the anatomy of the crow brain is much similar to humans’.
- Within the crow species, the smallest crow in the world is, the Dwarf Jay fromMexico, which is about 21.5 cm long. It weighs 40 g.
- The Common Raven (Corvus corax) and the Thick-billed Raven (Corvus crassirostris) ofEthiopiaare the largest in the crow family. Both weigh about 1500 g and have a length of 65 cm.
- Crow meat is edible and is found in some selected restaurants in the Western part of globe. In fact, crow meat is considered much healthier than pork. It has been found that crow meat contains fewer toxins than pork.
- Crows are very social and can even bond with humans. Commonly, it has been noticed that crows forage on the food disposed by humans. Moreover, they prove to be very useful when it comes to controlling pests that destroy crops.
- Crows are much smarter than birds, like owls, who often hunt them. Moreover, they also surpass the intelligence level of parrots.
- They are migratory birds and gather in large numbers to migrate during winter and autumn.
- A test conducted in 2004 revealed that crows are cleverer than Bonobo chimpanzees. This fact made them the most intelligent creatures after humans, and hence, scientists named them as ‘feathered apes’.
- Crows have a very complex form of language and their distinctive ‘cawing’ has different meanings at different times. They have also been known to mimic sounds of other animals and can associate different commotions to different events.
- The first crows appeared 17 million years ago, in the Miocene period, inAustraliaandOceania. It would seem bizarre, but crows are the closest relative to the beautiful bird-of-paradise.
- Crows are omnivores, and even eat dead animals and garbage.
- Crows have such high level of intelligence that it has been observed that if a crow is unable to crack a nut, then it puts it on a highway so that vehicle could pass over it to crack it open. It was also observed that they prefer to put the nut under smaller vehicles so that the kernel is not be reduced to pulp!
- When a crow is dying, a group of other crows would flock around and attack it aggressively to death. This is the reason why a group of crows is known as murder!
- Crows have single mate in their entire life and after hatching the eggs, both male and female take turn to incubate them. On an average, they lay about 4-7 eggs.
- Crows can skilfully construct the tools for food! Well, this fact has put up the scientific world in intrigue. Making tools was only known to be performed among humans and apes, like, chimpanzees. This new finding has bewildered the scientific community.
- The New Caledion crow can develop knife like tools from stiff leaves and stiff stalk of grasses.
- The crows ofQueensland,Australiahave learned the skill of grabbing and eating the toxic cane frog. The crows flip the frog at its back and start stabbing its throat with their long and sharp beaks, thus consuming the non-toxic innards.
- The wild hooded crow found inIsraelknows how to use bread crumbs for luring a fish.
- The two species of crows, the Hawaiian crow and the Mariana crow, have been listed in the endangered category.
- Some species of crow such as, common raven, Australian raven, and carrion cranes have known to attack and kill animals bigger than their size.
- Just like parrots, crows can also imitate human voice.
- Crows have the ability to judge the character of human beings by reading their faces and expressions.
- There are various myths associated with crows. They are depicted in various forms in different cultures. In Irish mythology, crows are associated with Morrigan, the goddess of war and death. According to the Greek mythology, when the white crow, the guard of god Apollo’s lover Coronis, informed him about the affair of his lover with Ischys, then in anger, god Apollo cursed and turned its white feathers into black. And the crows are said to bear black colour from that moment.