Thursday, May 16, 2013

In Praise of Crows

I have a confession to make.  I haven’t always been kind to the crows that call Bon Bon Pond home.  While they are welcome to eat the seeds I throw on the ground, I shoo them away from the suet feeders. On more than one occasion, I have scolded and shushed them for making a racket.  Never again.

This morning I witnessed one of the most valiant and selfless efforts I have ever seen.  While enjoying my morning coffee I heard the excited “caw caw cawing” of an agitated crow.  Looking out the window I saw no songbirds but instead witnessed a lone crow fly low thru the front yard, then swoop into the area adjacent to the gazebo, before returning to his murder in the backyard.  

Together the flock started raising a ruckus.  I walked out on the deck to closer inspect the commotion and, sure as shootin’, spotted a hawk in the dogwood tree.  The crows had him surrounded and were noisily voicing their disapproval. Finally, tired of the incessant squawking, the bird of prey lifted from the branches and took off for across the pond.  Like a fighter squadron, a group of crows closely accompanied the  magnificent marauder, thus ensuring he wouldn’t, or couldn’t, double back.  With the raptor gone the songbirds soon appeared back at the feeders.

I was speechless.  The crows had not only warned the little birds of danger but had protected them. What brave and heroic creatures!  They have forever earned my respect and, yes, my suet. 

Today offered yet one more valuable lesson from the world of wildlife and a great reminder as to what makes a wonderful community:  watch out for your neighbors and stick together for the greater good. 


  1. i too used to have the same opinion of crows. i thought they were bullies, scavengers and let's face it..bad luck. Then several years ago I witnessed, just as you described, a huge flock of crows coming out of nowhere and chasing off a hawk. More recently i witnessed 15-20 crows trying to chase off a Bald Eagle (needless to say the Bald Eagle was not fazed)I also learned what good parents crows are and how their offspring stay with them for years and help take care of the new offspring. I think they have a bad rap, but now i look at them just like any other bird and i see nothing but beauty :)

    1. Hi chandel314--What a great story. Thanks for sharing! Did you know that some crows never mate but instead choose to live their lives as "helpers" to the murder, assisting in the raising of the young. Talk about selfless!

    2. WOW! i did NOT know that! Makes me love them even more :)


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