The common crow, Corvus brachyrhyncos, may not be your first thought about spring, but these amazing birds have an intriguing story that begins with this season.
Biologists have said the crow is one of the most intelligent birds in the bird family.
The crow easily adapts to any situation and remembers events that reward food. They can count, solve puzzles, and mimic sounds of other animals and people.
When crows or other species have hatched in their nest, the "nestlings" are fully dependant on their parents for survival. These helpless baby birds can only cry for food. Crows take 18-35 days from hatching before learning to fly.
Once fully feathered, these young birds now called "fledglings," can perch, move about, and explore their surroundings, but still need parental protection.
Sometimes one might find juvenile crows or other birds on the ground. They may not be able to fly well, but they are most likely not orphaned. Parent birds keep their young in nests only as long as necessary. By varying their perching and roosting places away from their nests, birds improve their odds of thwarting predation.
Crows have a variety of sounds that change among individual groups
(called a "murder") or even from region to region. For example, a crow living in the north makes a "caw!" sound while a crow in the south makes a "ca-wah!" sound.
The common crow gathers in large flocks up to 200,000 in some places. They eat
everything from insects, frogs, snakes, clams (by dropping them from the air onto rocks), dead animals to fruit. They do like corn, but mostly left-over waste after a harvest. The crow is actually helpful in corn fields for the insects they eat.
But no matter how hard people try to "scare" the crows, these clever corvidae know how to outwit the odds and survive.