• Shannon
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      First of all, thank you so much for creating this course. I find the American Crow fascinating and am having fun learning more about them! I love the analogy that they are party animals, as I've observed them engage in behaviors that very much reflect that. 1. I would explain that I was concerned about that too, but I researched it and it's actually not true! I would encourage them to research it themselves via the Cornell Lab website. 2. I have a crow nest in my backyard, hence I want to learn more! It's so high up in our white pine, I haven't seen it without obstruction, but I did get to witness them bringing sticks, twigs and moss up there to build it :) 3. I live only where American Crows are. I've never seen a Common Raven, but would love to! 4. Most songbirds and small mammals living in a backyard would benefit because crows are so good at alarming or mobbing when something is happening, whether it be a hawk soaring above or the neighbors removing a tree (I listened to the alarm sound for a while when that happened.)
    • crow siluette I love hearing and observing corvids in general. They are very 'talkative'.  While I see mostly scrub jays and magpies on my daily walks, crows and ravens will show up at times.  I have not seen the tool-making, but noticed caching of food, retrieval, strategies to open acorns, and patient waiting for a hawk to leave its dinner 'table', so that a few scrabs can be picked up.
    • Michael
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      Hey All, I recently built thecrowbox.com and I have been trying to attract crows. I see them several times a week in a tree just a few houses away. I try leaving food out, at the same time, almost everyday. I leave food behind when I take my dog on walks. I have been doing this for about 2 months, but not making progress. They are really skittish. Any suggestions here? Note: Squirrels eat the food rather quickly so it isn't out long. I put some food on top of the box and some on the ground (in grass) Thanks, MK PXL_20221216_070311923
      • Cordelia
        Participant
        Chirps: 2
        Hi Michael.  I had a couple of thoughts for you. I've heard it's helpful if you and make a signature noise when you're leaving food, something like a particular whistle. Also I've been trying raw in shell peanuts with the crows in my area, but being very much a city population I think it might be an unfamiliar food for them. Maybe try mixing up what you're offering. Good luck!
      • Greg
        Participant
        Chirps: 1

        @Cordelia I live on the southwest side of Los Angeles very near the airport, LAX. We have many crows flying and calling throughout the day. Usually 4-6, sometimes more. I have left raw peanuts (a pile of 20 perhaps) in the shell at the edge of my yard in the shade of a large cedar bush. I will call to them when they are over head and perched on the street lamp or in a neighbor’s tree. Sometimes I mimic their “caws”. Sometimes I use a turkey call that does a good job mimicking. And then sometimes I just talk to them. My wife is worried that the neighbors will think I’m strange. ‘They will ignore the nuts occasionally. But they are gone later when I come home. Squirrels get some also. Then I’ve had them rush in as a group , raucously vying to see who goes to the pile first. Sometimes they sidle up to the pile and are not sure if they want to partake. Then a more experienced or perhaps bolder individual will walk right up, grab a nut and fly to a perch to eat. I like crows. They do seem to be warning each other at times. I’ve never seen why. We have opossums, raccoons, feral & domesticated cats, and probably coyotes. But I think theses creatures are almost strictly nocturnal. I assume the crows are sleeping at night. Aren’t they?

      • deb
        Participant
        Chirps: 3

        @Cordelia Cordelia and Mike :  Yes! I always make a clicking noise.  If I speak softly they definitely are listening, never looking at me straight on of course.  We used peanuts in shells but we started to see the shells as far as a block away.  Also, sometimes they would take them up to our chimney to crack them.  We couldn’t figure out the noise u til I saw them actually fly up there. We changed over to unsalted without the shells.  I also leave small dog kibble.

      • Dawn
        Participant
        Chirps: 23
        I have been leaving shelled unsalted peanuts for the crows on my dog walks for a year now.  They seem to know me, the dog, the sound of my squeaky front door and my call "hello crows".  They will follow me around the block and perch right above me.  They don't alarm when they see me usually any more.  I leave about 6 peanuts in an open area and walk away and they usually swoop right in to take them (if they are not busy chasing something away). There is an adult female (I think) with a subadult helper to feed the fledges each year.  There were 2 last year and 3 this year.  I am starting to be able to identify some individuals by their unique bill shapes! Sometimes the adults will gather up all the peanuts at once and go get some water.  Then they take them to the fledges that gurgle as they get fed.  Lately I have seen some adults ignore the fledges begging calls and cache the peanuts in the grass and make the fledges find them for themselves.
      • Charles
        Participant
        Chirps: 2
        I had rouble attracting crows as well. However, when I switched the location of where I put the peanuts, my luck changed dramatically. There was some thing about the back of our house that they did not respond to. They like to come to our front porch.
    • Jennifer
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      2 - I live by a lake in North Georgia - and they are everywhere doing everything - including hopping along the side of the lake - could they be fishing? They also seem to use sentinels - there is always at least one perched on a tree overlooking the others. Looking forward to learning more!
    • Philip
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      Surprised that the predator study did not include cats feral & domestic have to believe they do more damage than deer. And it being such a contentious issue among animal lovers it would be good to document and learn more
      • Cordelia
        Participant
        Chirps: 2
        It's not 100% clear, but it sounds like the study the video cites had domestic and other cats as part of the meso-mammal group. Which in this study was the 3rd largest predator group. It also might be worth noting that this study seemed to focus only on predation of eggs and nestlings. It's possible that cats tend to eat birds when they're older. A lot of domestic cats aren't great when it comes to getting up and down trees. I don't have any data for this, but it would makes sense to me if most of the birds cats are eating are older/ out of the nest. As for numbers, according to an article on this site cats apparently kill an estimated 1.4 to 3.7 billion birds in the US annually. And of course even a well fed cat will often kill birds out of instinct. So definitely a problem. I'm a cat lover too though. I usually just remind people that keeping cats indoors also allows cats to live longer, and that if they're worried about enrichment a "catio" can be a great option. For an established outdoor cat I'd encourage people to consider a bright reflective collar with a bell. It gives birds at least some warning, and can also help protect their cat from cars
    • Daniel
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      4. I’d argue that some of the American Crows predators might benefit from large amounts of crows.  For instance, if a large amount of crows have been in an area, there would be many remnants of their flock. Clues like droppings, feathers and, if in a human-populated area, trash. Could lead a crow predator to either wait around the area to see if they’ll return or track them down to score a potential meal.
    • Paulette
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      Snakes and squirrels kill more baby birds or eat the eggs I assume. I have never actually seen a crow's nest but it in my old neighbourhood they loved the highest evergreen trees it seems.I can tell them by their call and when you see a pair of Raven's they are huge around us and rarely appear. Crows are always communicating with each other and I am pretty sure animals and other birds learn their calls generally as danger or hey party, there is lots for everybody here.
    • Wesley
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      1. Akshually crows make up a relatively small percentage of nest preditation, lets go squirrel hunting
    • james
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      First off, this is a wonderful  course. I am so thankful to be able to take it. 1. i would explain that that is a common misconception that i had also believed, but that it was untrue. In fact, crows account for a rather small portion of egg/nestling predation 2 . i have seen american crows almost everywhere in the province of bc.  I dont know if ive seen a crows nest but ive seen and heard many fledglings 3. where i live, there are both crows and ravens. I am confident in distinguishing one from another.    I have found that crows are far more sociable with each other in large groups, and (at least the population at my nearby beach) are more inclined to come closer to humans and investigate them. 4. I think many foraging creatures would benefit from crows around as they seem to hide and stockpile enormous amounts of food! Lots of which im sure is found and consumed by other birds and animals. Crows also provide great security for other birds when hawks, eagles , or owls are around. In my experience, they landmark and swoop/scold the predators usually until the predator opts to fly away. Then the crows tend to follow them for a good distance until satisfied theyre safely away. I just love crows.
      • Paulette
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        I agree, I enjoy crows too and sometimes I scold them when they seem to be complaining or yelling too much. I moved and am in an apartment complex near a McDonald's etc. There were tons of crows but since the storms this past week, they seem to have moved on but the trees were filled with them. My binoculars are not strong enough to differentiate
      • emmy
        Participant
        Chirps: 1
        Hi, neighbor! I too reside in bc and adore watching the crows scavenge for food on the shore. It's fascinating to observe them repeatedly attempting to release clams from above. The crow truly is a beautiful bird.
    • Li
      Participant
      Chirps: 33
      1.In fact,snakes and squirrels kill far more song birds than American crows. 4.Some American crows are also food for other predators.
    • Wendell
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      1. Chipmunks, snakes, and squirrels are greater predators than crows. Crows are a very small percentage of baby bird predation. 2. back yard field looking for grubs and insects. No nests found yet. 3. Yes, northern Vermont. Yes. Ravens are sighted at higher elevations, Green Mountains. 4. Owls; nesting sites. Warnings calls, prey animals.
    • Kimberly
      Participant
      Chirps: 9
      3.  Looking at the range map we have more ravens than crows in southern Arizona, although I have seen them here.  I saw two crows in Sedona raiding a dumpster and throwing food and paper plate around.  They were quite hilarious. 1. If I had a neighbor who was complaining a crow was eating the songbird nestlings I would point out the burrowing owls and Harris Hawks who actively raid nests to feed their babies in the spring.
    • Mari
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      3) I live in Apple Valley, the high desert of California. We have both. The main difference is that the Raven is HUGE compared to the Crow. The Ravens live in my neighborhood which is pretty rural, and the Crows seem to like being in the suburbs more. I don't know why they have a preference. The Ravens know that if they squawk at my bedroom window, I will come out and feed them cat food. When I go out running, they sometimes follow me, and I can get dive-bombed, but it is more like play (I hope.) Today I found some silver jewelry by my bedroom window, they must have stolen it from somewhere, but it's mine now. I like when babies are born. They are easier to get to know. Specific Ravens have their tree perch and corner of the Apt  Building that seems to be claimed as theirs. A couple appears to be a lot more fun-loving than the others. It is like they are class clowns. There is one that hides in his tall bush that is taller than the roof of my apartment building, and when I go to get the mail, he will sometimes scare me by popping out and squawking at me and swooping down. He is such a nut. I love ravens and crows. It's a good thing I like to get up early. But I have a pair of great horned owls that live in the tree behind where I live, which can keep me up.
    • Linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      Ann Arbor, Michigan has a massive amount of crows that come to roost in the evening of the cooler months.  It's quite a sight to see!  They completely fill the air.  Then, at night walking around, you just look up and see the trees are completely filled with them.  This is why I am taking this course, to learn more about these birds that are so prevalent here.  The local Audubon society, when they do bird counts, have one person to count just the crows. Ravens are not in southern Michigan, but can be easily found farther up north.
    • Linda
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      1. Squirrels and chipmunks take the majority of nestlings in the Northeast. Crows are near the bottom of the list of baby bird predators. 2. The best sighting of American Crows was with a Mass Audubon group on a cold night in February in a hospital parking lot in Springfield, MA. The crows were flying in from staging areas to roost at the edges of the parking lot where the lights gave them protection from owls. There were an estimated 7,000-10,000 crows, and I have never heard or seen anything like it! 3. There are both crows and ravens where I live in Western Massachusetts. The biggest difference I notice is the tendency for ravens to be more solitary. I rarely see them in large flocks like I do the crows. 4. Crows help to keep the insect and rodent population down, provide nests for great horned owls and merlins, are themselves prey for other animals, and help disperse seeds.
    • Barbara
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      1) Chipmunks and squirrels eat more songbird nestlings than do crows, at least here in Georgia. Additionally, if you are concerned about song birds populations, make sure to take into consideration those that we impacting during migration season by leaving our lights on at night. 2) While walking in my neighborhood, I have heard and seen crows in one particular area, going on several years now. 3) Pretty sure I have never seen a raven.  Going forward I will be looking for them when I travel. 4) I do not know specifically how crows can be a benefit to other animals, but considering that the basic biology includes the concept of the "Web of Life", I am sure they must be connected to other animals in their habitat.
    • TF
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      We have been watching neighbor crows for the past 15 or so years.   I'd share that first there are no politicians in nature.   All the earth's creatures have a place in the ecosystem.   Crows are a very very small part of killing songbirds.  Us humans and the way we live are magnitudes larger in the killing of birds are all sorts.
    • Jamie
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      2. I have seen American Crows here in San Diego but haven't seen a nest. Every evening around 6-7pm (depending on daylight savings time), at least one hundred crows gather in the neighboring trees and seem to be catching up on the day's activities or planning the evening's affairs. It's my favorite time of the day to stop what I'm doing, listen to their family squawks and squabbles and imagine what they might be discussing. 3. I've noticed many Common Ravens as well, and now thanks to this course feel more confident in my ability to distinguish between the two species. Like others who've commented here, it seems the ravens are more solitary than the crows. I've also seen them in Joshua Tree which surprised me; I never expected them to be in the desert!
    • 1. When a neighbor or friend state that crows are killing young songbirds, it is important to point out this is a more rare instance than they think.  Snakes, squirrels and chipmunks kill the highest % of songbirds and crows account for less than 5 %. 3. Thanks to the Professor McGowan’s tips on determining the differences between Crows and Ravens, along with the brilliant “snap ID” quizzes, I believe I am now much better at identifying one over the other ! 4. The entire ecosystem where crows live, benefits from their presence ! Crows help to mitigate some of the prey populations, while also serving the community of birds by alerting the community to the presence of predators.
    • Alicia
      Participant
      Chirps: 24
      1. I would share that snakes and squirrels kill far more song birds than American crows. 2. I have seen American Crows in Chicago in neighborhoods and city parks. 3. No. I live in Chicago. Common Ravens are not found here. 4. An entire ecosystem benefits from having crows around. They control their prey populations while at the same time thy provide food for animals in a higher trophic level.
    • Cara
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      1.  Surprisingly, neighbor, crows eat very few nestlings, and squirrels, even chipmunks, are one of the biggest nest predators, along with snakes! 2.  We see crows often in the rural area of Kentucky in which we live.  There's usually a lookout/sentry and four to five more.  I've never seen a crow's nest, but always look for nests when hiking. 3.  Our area has American Crows but we are within 50 miles of raven habitat and have seen them there.  While I am able to distinguish easily between their calls, I now know more of the physical characteristics that distinguish crows and ravens. 4.  Crows alert other birds (and the neighborhood) to the presence of owls and hawks and they help keep the rodent population down.
    • Helen
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      0BB7EED7-3C75-434E-8FBD-3AC035A2F59EI live in the sliver of NC that has both American Crows and Ravens year round and on Facebook wildlife appreciation groups here you can almost always find an ongoing discussion about a rather a picture is of a crow or raven (or beaver and groundhog but alas)… this lesson was extremely helpful to me as I always harbored a little sliver of doubt myself.  If I am applying what I learned correctly, my  yard harbors the American Crow.
    • Stephanie
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      1. The crow will harm songbird nestlings, but your biggest culprit is snakes in the South, and where you don't have many snakes, you need to be more concerned about squirrels and chipmunks. A crow will bother a songbird nest a little more than a deer.
    • Trish
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      We have a pair of crows that live on our street.  I was so upset and yet impressed last summer as one crow taunted a mother bunny far enough away from her nest so that the other could snatch one of her baby bunnies and fly off (traumatic moment as the mother bunny actually screamed and thumped her feet).  The crow's teamwork was impressive.  I was so mad at them at first until later I saw the pair had a young crow of their own; everyone has to eat and we certainly have enough bunnies around here!
      • Paulette
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        Aww, that is some story, it is hard to watch but we do have to understand nature.
    • Rachel
      Participant
      Chirps: 9
      1- actually squirrels and snakes eat more bird eggs than crows.