• Bird Academy
      Bird Academy
      1. Do the crows in your area appear healthy?  Have you seen any evidence of foot disease? Did West Nile Virus have a significant impact on the population, to your knowledge?
      2. Have you ever noticed any aggression between American Crows, or are they generally cooperating, maybe taking care of each other?
      You must be enrolled in the course to reply to this topic.
    • Elizabeth
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I have been feeding a group of crows for twelve years. I live in Northern Arizona, about 7 miles NE of Flagstaff, AZ. The crows appear to be healthy and I've never seen them fighting with each other. I've not noticed any injuries. In general they cooperate with each other. If I'm late with the food, there are usually one or two crows who have been assigned to let the others know when I put the food out. They don't usually eat any food before the rest of the crows arrive. But they start calling loudly when I put the food out. Sometimes one will fly off and get the others if they don't come soon after being called. A few years ago a family of Ravens showed up. There are 5 of them but initially a pair came and then a couple years later, there were five that were sometimes here together. The crows give way to the Ravens who eat some food for a while and then leave long before all the food has been eaten. I've seen squabbles at the food dish occasionally among the crows, but nothing that looked serious, and I've not seen the ravens do that, nor have I seen any squabbles between the crows and ravens. I wonder how the crows that are left to notify the others know they have been assigned to this duty. In the fall I notice the crows look ugly - they are probably molting - but it is the feathers around their heads that look the worst. Their necks start to look scraggly. In winter we get the biggest groups - sometimes up to 40 crows. In spring the number of crows drops off drastically, and in summer they bring fledglings to our house. I'm enjoying this course.
    • Roger
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      DSCN0486
    • Larry
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I have never witnessed fighting to any great extent or foot problems with crows though have seen this in other birds.
    • Mike
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      The number of crows in my area appears diminished but I may be noticing a dispersal due to the winter.  I have not seen any one legged crows but  West Nile Virus is definitely in my area according to our state DNR.  I see that our crows are always competing and fighting for scraps of food.  Pairs may cooperate but not larger groups.  Not much feeding of birds goes on in my neighborhood and we are far enough away from corn fields that more than one family may not be supportable.  
    • Becky
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      1. This section solved a mystery for me. A one-legged crow used to visit my yard regularly. I called him Bill, not knowing for sure that he was male, but statistically I was probably right. I met Bill after his foot had already fallen off and healed. He hopped around the yard and got along as well as any other crow. He was in a family of three: mate and helper perhaps? One year the family group had two offspring and the five of them would visit the yard daily for peanuts. I wondered how Bill had lost his foot, and I finally know. 2. I have most often seen crows cooperate, but I did witness some territory disputes between a nesting pair and some neighboring crows last summer. Lots of flying and darting at one another in the air. One of the crows, the mating male, I thought, had a ragged appearance and appeared to be missing some feathers as the summer went on.
    • John
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      The crows I have observed in my area do appear to be healthy. I had no knowledge of foot disease before this course. If I were to see a crow missing a foot, before this course, I would have thought that it was the result of a collision with a car or some other mechanical event. I have no knowledge of West Nile Virus infection the local population here in western North Carolina. I have observed aggression between the crows of this area. In fact, I have observed much raucous calling and chasing through the trees, signs of territory protection or invasion. Occasionally I have observed pairs of crows very close on a perch possibly allopreening.
    • cmaack
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      The crows in my neighborhood appear healthy and I haven't seen any cases of missing feet or avian pox. West Nile may be having an impact since I've found two dead crows in the gardens of our retirement community. Did not examine them closely  - one was pretty decomposed. In 2020 there was a crow's nest in a tree near one of our tall buildings and I was able to watch the nesting pair come and go, start feeding, and eventually raise 3 young almost to the point of fledging. One appeared dead on the ground below the tree, young enough to still have growing feathers. Another later fell (or was pushed?) out of the nest and was on the ground, lying on one side with the wing underneath it in an unnatural position. The parents were very aggressive to humans approaching. It died not long afterwards. The last young managed to fledge and even get across the street to a street lamp, where it begged. The following day it was no longer there so I can only speculate. Many of the local crows ate bread scraps that someone was dumping in the parking lot nearby and I (also speculating) think the parents of the nest I observed might have been providing poor nutrition to their brood.
    • david
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      1)  the crows here (pa) seem very healthy plus we feed them suet.  no evidence of a foot disease--but wasn't really looking;   west nile seemingly had little to no effect to my knowledge.   2)  no obvious aggression other than with raptors or a grey squirrel to two.  they seem very familial toward each other.
    • 1.  They all seem healthy to me.   I haven't noticed (or looked for) and foot missing.  I don't know how the virus effected my current area.  I wasn't living here at the time. 2.  No aggression noticed between them, just harrassing other raptors.
    • Kathleen
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      0D8AF5BB-36D4-44BD-8985-AE3F3FBDF692
    • Kathleen
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      The crows around here appear healthy.  I have not seen sick crows, though I have seen others sick.  I now realize how familiar I am with the crows around our house.  They must be a family.  Though I’ve seen them chase the red tail and others, I’ve never seen them be aggressive to one another.  But, now with this course, I have more to watch for and more to look forward to!
    • Ruth
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      1.  The crows I observe in my neighborhood of the UAE do appear healthy, despite diets of an apparently higher-than-average proportion of leftover junk food.  I have introduced peanuts, and although it is obviously not their favorite food here (Eggs and french fries are!) they are cleaning the ledge of the peanuts more quickly now than before.  Looking more closely for it, I noticed one case of swollen foot on a visiting crow the other day, but I have never noticed limping crows before.  In contrast to the healthy and sleek appearance of the crows that visit my ledge, I have noticed some rock pigeons with avian pox.   2.  I have seen/heard crows fighting on two or three occasions, over the course of 12 years here.  I would guess these were due to territorial disputes.  I remember someone in a neighboring apartment dumping water on some crows to break up a fight.  Crows tend to have a bad reputation here as in other countries.  ... However, this crow made the local news because other crows had been seen feeding it and keeping it company while it was injured.  It was welcome good publicity for urban crows in the UAE because past articles depict them only as villains and invasive pests. Sharjah Crow
    • I have not notice any crows missing a foot in my area.  No fights either.
    • james
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      I have seen some crows with tumour-like growths around their eyes and on their feet. But it didnt seem to affect their behaviour (they were still assertive around other  crows when going for food). i visit a group of crows several times a week, and have done for several years. Some of the crows i know are the same as i can recognize unique physical or vocal characteristics. I have seen them to be largely cooperative with each other. Occasionally they will get in a spat, the worst of which is usually one crow getting briefly pinned to the ground by another crow, screeching like hell to get out. After one such episode, 3 other birds from the flock actually took chase to the aggressor bird and flew after him for quite a distance away.  Another time, the victim bird was quite upset after having been pinned for several seconds. He flew away to a log, where another crow  flew right up next to him, almost nuzzled him, and sat close in silence for a long time (probably 10 minutes).  It was as if he were providing him comfort.
    • Karen
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      answering question # 1, I feed crows in our yard, I have tried to see how they are doing, I have not seen any foot problems. I did see the crows already at the feed chase off another crow. I haven't been able to discover anything else with the crows.
    • Barbara
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      1. The crows in my area do appear to be healthy.Personally, I have not seen evidence of West Nile Virus, but have been made aware through a wildlife rescue that Avian Bird Flu is highly contagious and on the rise in our area. 2. I have not witnessed agression between crows. The group I observe is a family group that is often times hanging out together and running off a red tail hawk that lives in the area.
    • I have never seen  a serious fight between crows , although i have seen American crows drive away Fish crows . When I see crows flying high and being quiet , they often turn out o be Fish crows .
    • Crows now appear to b healthy in my area of sSt. Louis , MO. Some years ago, when WNV was around , I saw crows that looked very sick . sSome staggered, some allowed people to come too close , some appeared to be blind . I saw some carcasse. There were far fewer crows . At the same time I noticed that groups of Fish crows replaced them.
    • Alicia
      Participant
      Chirps: 24
      1. I have not seen any evidence of foot disease or the impacts of WNV on the crows. 2. I have also not witnessed any aggression between crows. They appear to be cooperative with each other.
    • Diana
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      That was really interesting.  Years ago, a crow would visit me regularly , for peanuts and peanut butter. He had one foot. I always thought that he might have been attacked by a predator, or had some genetic deformity. Now, I’m pretty sure that disease was the reason that he lost his foot!  He continued to visit me for a couple of years. Then, one day he was gone. I never saw him again. I’ve never seen aggression as it was described, but that “un-banded female” was pretty wild!  
    • Daphne
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      This past spring, there was a crow on my back lawn sitting, chest to ground. When he got up to fly away, I saw his right leg was dangling useless. I watched to see if I should try and catch him and take him to the vet college, but he flew off, no problem with his wings at least. Over the next number of days, I saw him on the front lawn (where I have feeders and a bird bath) being fed by an adult. I think he was a juvenile. To my relief, he gradually started to use the bad leg, and in the end he seemed to completely regain its use. (Although he wasn't banded, I had been watching him mostly as crippled and learned to differentiate him from the others as he gradually regained use of the leg.) The day came when he could balance well enough on the bird bath and drink (wobbling a bit), but I didn't see how he got water before then as, with only one leg in the earlier days, he couldn't balance on the bird bath. A happy ending to what might have been a tragedy (if a predator had happened along when he was resting on the ground). I had another experience once, when I drove home up my driveway and saw a group of agitated crows hopping around one on the ground. I got out and approached with a blanket. The others moved away and I picked up the injured crow (I think he may have flown into the power line above him, no other signs of injury) and put him into "convalescent care," i.e., a cat cage placed in a dark, quiet place, to let him recuperate (or not). A while later, I checked on him and he was perky, so I released him and he flew off with a loud "caw," which I chose to interpret as "thank you" (:>). It was so interesting to see the other crows sort of wringing their hands (or wings), not sure what to do about him on the ground but standing watch until help (moi!) came along. Bird watching is so rewarding.
    • Jeanne
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      The crows in my area appear very healthy.  I haven't seen any evidence of foot disease, but then I haven't been paying attention to crow's feet lately.  I intend to start looking at their feet from now on.  I haven't notice any aggressive behavior between American Crows.  In fact quite the opposite.  They congregate in big roosts and treat each other with kindness and respect.  I call out to them when I pass/walk underneath them on the sidewalk.  They are sitting on a  high, and long extended telephone wire above me.  They watch me and they answer back with their loud cawing.  Sometimes over 50 birds cawing in unison.  Sounds like a beautiful choir from God.
    • Alanna
      Participant
      Chirps: 15
      The crows near me do not seem to get into any fights for marking their territories and they look perfectly healthy and happy. I never seen a crow with a missing foot unless I never notice since crows adapt and live on with their lives as if they have two feet. Along aggression I would see is a bunch of crowing but even that doesn't seem to be anything serious. Next time that I see crows, I want to look even more closely if they have any missing feet and if they are starting to mark territories.
    • Lily
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      i do not remember ever seeing a crow hurt another crow, and the crows around my house appear healthy. i did see a crow/raven's leg in a parking lot once, but there were some feathers too, so it might have just been hit my a car. it might have been a magpie too, since we have a lot where we live.