May 04 2011

No Crows…?

Published by at 7:30 am under Crows, Ravens


It’s rare to notice an absence in nature.   Our brains are wired to see “This is here, this is new,” but unless we’re specifically watching for something, we don’t notice when it’s gone.

The crows are a case in point.

Last fall in the city of Pittsburgh everyone remarked that there were, “So many crows!”   “Too many crows!”  and even “The crows are awful!”

But look now.  Where are they?  Have you seen more than one or two lately?  Have you seen any?

They are virtually gone. 

We didn’t have to do anything to “get rid” of them.  Some of them left town to nest in the suburbs and those who stayed to nest here are extremely secretive.

This is the crows’ quiet period.  

If you don’t like crows, savor this moment.  When their young fledge they’ll be noisy again.  

This fall they’ll be back in the thousands and everyone will say, “There are so many crows!”

(photo by Chuck Tague)

9 responses so far

9 Responses to “No Crows…?”

  1. Kathyon 04 May 2011 at 7:42 am

    Love it!!

  2. Jennieon 04 May 2011 at 7:55 am

    I can tell you where some of the crows are – in my northern suburban neighborhood. Over the last couple of weeks they have started hanging out in my yard more, eating seed that has fallen from the feeders and bullying the smaller birds. I’ll gladly send them back. ;-)

  3. Barb Simonon 04 May 2011 at 9:37 am

    I’ve notice the arrival of the grackles. They’re not as plentiful as the crows at all, but they have arrived. They stalk around on the ground and have an extra long tail and are extra glossy. They are lots of fun to watch. They LOVE french fries if they find a McDonald’s dumpster. Also, in Schenley Park I’m seeing chipping sparrows, and oh are they tiny. We saw a Carolina wren. These birds have been missing all winter and now they are here. The carolina wren seems to like being on the ground along the edges of the woods right beside the open grassy areas. She pokes around among the fallen leaves and dead branches within a foot or two of the edge of the woods. She’s a very busy little thing.

  4. Kayon 04 May 2011 at 10:24 am

    I live in the southern suburbs at the end of a wooded protected area and we always have plenty of crows all year round. They do eat the seed on the ground and fortunately are too large for the seed and suet feeders. They do provide some entertainment though, when the red tail hawks get too close, they have a “crow rumble”. I think the hawk just plays with them and when the hawk is done with the “game”, soars as high as he can and leaves the crows in the dust. Kind of funny to watch-they’re not so tuff afterall.

  5. sharon leadbiteron 04 May 2011 at 10:29 am

    Oh no!!! I love the crows .. they are one of the most intelligent birds .. they just got a bad rap from hollywood and Mr Poe. If you hang out in the Allegheny Cemetary you can see them there

  6. Patty C.on 04 May 2011 at 11:05 am

    One fall, the crows roosted in Frick Park just outside my house. The trees were thick with crows, just like the Alfred Hitchcock movie. Such a racket, too. It was kind of surreal.

  7. Jennieon 04 May 2011 at 11:19 am

    Kay is right, the “crow rumble” is funny when they harass a hawk. I just realized the juncos haven’t been in my yard for a couple of weeks now. They hang out here all winter, and their leaving is always a sure sign that winter is finally over.

  8. Marianneon 04 May 2011 at 3:20 pm

    I agree with Sharon.

    The crows around me are much quieter also. They have a nest behind my house again. I frequently see one of them on guard duty perched high up in a tree.

    Here is a short video showing a crow’s intelligence, where it makes and uses a tool! Amazing! :-)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TtmLVP0HvDg

  9. Kathy Mon 04 May 2011 at 8:57 pm

    I saw a bunch today in North Park harassing a hawk.

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