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Thread: Crows and Ravens - Split from the Welcome Section.

  1. #11
    push to stutardepid itch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KOI View Post
    It's the same sound as one of the sounds the Predator makes.
    My day?

    Made.

  2. #12
    Meae Musae Servus Hephaestus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by itch View Post
    My day?

    Made.
    I had the same reaction when I learned of it.
    For some, "how", not "why", is the fundamental unit of measure for curiosity. This divergence is neither parallel, nor straight. Where one might have a "why?-5" problem, it might only be a "how?-2" question. But then, there are also many things where the "why?" is immediately obvious but the "how?" is best measured in centuries of perpetual wonder. Both approaches have their drawbacks.

    If one is superior, the other is unaware of it.

    --Meditations on Uncertainty Vol ξ(x)

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by itch View Post
    Do you ever count the calls? I've noticed the ones here will do things like 5 evenly spaced "caw!" and then wait a bit before calling again the same way, rinse, repeat. If you listen very closely, sometimes you can hear another one calling back in the distance.

    They also make this interesting sort of clicking or clucking sound at one another when they're close.

    One day in the last couple of weeks I heard one outside so I went out with some peanuts. It was perched alone on the utility lines above the sidewalk, and it would call three times and then go "hurrrrrr" (it sounded like human sound, not a crow sound). It did this for a couple minutes while I waited around to see if it was going to take any peanuts. It didn't appear to be unwell (at least, it wasn't staggering around or anything). Oddly, I didn't see any of the others around either. This might not have been one of "my" crows.

    I haven't heard one making that sound since. I understand that they can mock human words like parrots.
    I went through a phase where I actually looked up all the known calls and such and tried to memorize them. It didn't stick as I didn't have enough reinforcing time with crows or ravens.

    The only time I see them now are out on random walks. I don't have a single murder that hangs around nearby. I think they don't trust my dog.

    I did, late last night when I couldn't sleep, go on a youtube binge looking for Raven and Crow vids. There's some pretty convincing talkers out there, btw. Sound human with the words they do know. Found a lot of people trying to keep them as pets too. That doesn't seem to work well, they get way too bored and tear everything to shreds. However, there was one lady that had one that lived with her free. She just left a window open and since she raised it, it stayed at her house most the time.

    My favorite vids, though, were of wild Ravens just chill'n with people trying to get something. Social fun? Food? Both?

    I'll see if I can find them again and post them here.
    Quote Originally Posted by whatloveihave View Post
    I don't find you a potential threat to human society, you're not crazy. Feces.

  4. #14






    And the nevermore Raven - Waka Waka:
    Quote Originally Posted by whatloveihave View Post
    I don't find you a potential threat to human society, you're not crazy. Feces.

  5. #15
    push to stutardepid itch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stigmatica View Post
    I went through a phase where I actually looked up all the known calls and such and tried to memorize them. It didn't stick as I didn't have enough reinforcing time with crows or ravens.

    The only time I see them now are out on random walks. I don't have a single murder that hangs around nearby. I think they don't trust my dog.

    I did, late last night when I couldn't sleep, go on a youtube binge looking for Raven and Crow vids. There's some pretty convincing talkers out there, btw. Sound human with the words they do know. Found a lot of people trying to keep them as pets too. That doesn't seem to work well, they get way too bored and tear everything to shreds. However, there was one lady that had one that lived with her free. She just left a window open and since she raised it, it stayed at her house most the time.

    My favorite vids, though, were of wild Ravens just chill'n with people trying to get something. Social fun? Food? Both?

    I'll see if I can find them again and post them here.
    Ahh fun! I'm going to watch those while I procrastinate cooking dinner!

    Mine stopped by for a little while today, which was nice because I hadn't seen them all here for days. One was on the utility lines out front, one was on the lines a couple of doors down (spotter?) and the other four were in a tree across the street. Eventually all six were standing around cracking peanuts open in front of my house.

    There is a wildlife rehab nearby and they have a crow there named Tilly. She can never be released because she never learned to be a crow. I hung out with her for a few minutes while I was there and I was pretty enchanted by her. She's a people-crow... I understand that when she was found her talons had pink nail polish.

  6. #16
    push to stutardepid itch's Avatar
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    *blink* so this (thread) happened... Thanks @stigmatica

    I spent a few minutes the other day reading about the different types of calls crows use and have been keeping an ear out the window. Most of the chatter is companion calls, with the odd alarm here and there. Most of the non-companion calls seem to be territorial - if they're close enough and I get to a window in time I'll often see two or more engaged in some kind of chase when I hear these calls. Other times I suspect there's a cat nearby while the crows are carrying out ground operations - there are a lot of cats roaming around my neighborhood. Some are strays but many have homes and are wearing collars.

    Earlier today I was thinking it might be neat to take note of each different companion call I hear. I'm not entirely sure what this would tell me... I would know that one crow is calling another individual or group of crows, but does one crow call to different individuals or groups of crows with different companion calls? Like if I post to intpc and then post to intpf, it's easy to tell it's me using my account at either forum to post a message. Unfortunately it's rather difficult for me at this point to tell crows apart and therefor know which crow I am observing making a specific call. I might eventually develop some ability to tell them apart at a distance... hard to say... I mean, I'd have to get really close as it is. I can tell some of the older ones from the younger ones, and there are one or two adults with white feathers who I recognize when they come back. Otherwise, I can tell a bit from their body language... one or two will get closer than the others, or will more readily come down from wherever they're perched to score some peanuts before the others. Just knowing how many different companion calls are being used would be pretty cool I guess.

    I think I mentioned the pigeons and blue jays that stalk me? Because I should. I am stalked by pigeons and blue jays. They watch me through my windows; i am not being ridiculous!! When I walk past or linger by my front window, pigeons and blue jays appear as if from out of nowhere and start shrieking from the maple tree out front. I can walk out onto my front doorstep, not see a single bird and line up some peanuts along the railing and within a minute up to 6 jays will show up (last count yesterday). If I step out further onto the walkway where they can see me, a flock of pigeons is usually roosting on the roof a couple doors down and they descend onto my lawn, or onto the front of my roof and stare at me.

    The jays fascinate me, though the pigeons are also fascinating they're more of a filthy nuisance (mind the jays excrete their share of excrement too) than they are any amount of fun. The pigeons will startle and flock-off (lol) if I blink, but I think the jays would eat me if they were big enough; they're really aggressive and if I don't move they'll come within a couple feet of me. Often while I am lining the peanuts up on the rail they will swoop down behind me and snatch peanuts I've just put down while I'm standing there.

    Late this afternoon I heard a jay shriek rather loudly at the front of the house. Sometimes they will perch on the rail nearest the window and call until I chuck a handful of peanuts onto the doorstep. So upon hearing this one I looked out the front window and sure enough there it was, perched on the hand rail to the front step. I opened the front door a crack and tossed a small handful of peanuts out onto the doorstep. After closing the door I went back to the front window to watch. Oddly, it didn't take a peanut.

    Instead, it stood on the rail and peeked over the edge towards the lawn, then pivoted 180 degrees and cocked its head and peered at the floor of the doorstep, then back the other way to peek over the edge again. I watched it do this for a good ten seconds before I figured out what was going on. I slowly opened the front door and stepped out; the blue jay didn't move. I walked slowly past the jay (which still didn't move) and down the front steps where I could stoop down and see under the doorstep. The jay was still perched, doing its weird dance.

    Under the doorstep, as I expected, was the little grey cat who lives in one of the adjacent houses. This is the same cat I watched streaking across the front lawn with a blue jay in its mouth some weeks ago, and then a week or so after that I watched it run off with one of the pigeons. The blue jay was behaving the way it was because it knew the cat was under the door step, but it couldn't see it; it seems like it really really wanted those peanuts though. While I was talking at (talking to the cat might imply that it was listening or even acknowledging my presence at all) the cat, the jay snatched up one peanut and flew off down the street. I collected up the remaining peanuts I had tossed onto the doorstep and took them inside so there would be less reason for any birds to be kicking around while the cat was lurking there.

    I ran out of peanuts this evening. I had noticed two of the crows were loitering on one of the utility poles out front so I dumped the remnants of a couple mostly empty peanut bags onto the grass under the maple tree out front. I turned around to go inside and was startled by a third crow who was sauntering up behind me on his way to the goodies under the tree. He was about 10' away from me, which seems to be their happy distance for now. The thing is... tomorrow is going to be rough; I'm not sure if there's going to be a chance during the day to go buy more peanuts, which means listening to frantic jay calls every time I go to the kitchen to make a cup of coffee.

  7. #17
    Member Mxx's Avatar
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    itch, if you think of it, can you take some photos the next time? Or even video?

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mxx View Post
    itch, if you think of it, can you take some photos the next time? Or even video?
    I'm building up to that. Last night I had gone looking for a video I took some years ago of the crows mobbing a raccoon who was up a tree in my back yard. Cannot find!

    I had a video of a jay on my doorstep, peering at me through the window but then towards the end of the thing I am talking to the bird. Need edit!

    But I agree, some kind of visual aid would be nifty.

  9. #19
    Member Mxx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by itch View Post
    But I agree, some kind of visual aid would be nifty.
    Woot.


  10. #20
    @itch - I'm a bit envious. I was doing the same things before I got a dog. Peanuts and all. But it's interesting that they put dogs far higher on the fear scale than they do humans.

    I actually put some peanuts out this morning, with hopes. They're still there.

    Have you considered (I know it's crazy, but I thought of it at one time but never carried through) putting a microphone or cam (with microphone) at a perch location they use so you can get some of the interpersonal chatter recorded? I think the calls are pretty well known (just a matter of memorizing, and as you alluded to in your post, recognizing the source and target). But chatter, I think, is untapped.
    Quote Originally Posted by whatloveihave View Post
    I don't find you a potential threat to human society, you're not crazy. Feces.

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