The Crows are always around, although they prefer the larger trees in the area. Their territory clearly includes an Oak tree overhanging our garden and the squirrels often come in for some serious harrassment if they dare to venture into it. The crows seem surprisingly nervous when they come down onto the grass, and are easier to photograph out in the open - like the one on the right pictured the cliff top.
Photograph (right)- February 2003
In late May 2003 though, two fledglings were spotted in the garden. They provided us with great entertainment throughout the day, climbing onto earth mounds or the low branches of trees and throwing themselves off hopefully. One ended up suspended by one talon from a branch and swung to and fro for some time before surrendering to gravity and falling to the ground. The picture below left shows one youngster scurrying across the lawn after a brush with the neighbourhood cat (the parents arrived in the nick of time and saw the cat off), whilst the other looks on, apparently showing no great enthusiasm for aviation.
Four days later, another pair of juveniles appeared. These two seemed incapable of even attempting flight. They nestled into the top of an old turf mound and waited to be fed. They were quite unconcerned when I approached within a few feet of them, although the parents would not feed them until I retreated. These pictures show clearly the blue eyes which are apparently characteristic of nestlings.
I always think of the Crow as all black. However, they quite often sport a few white streaks or patches, such as this one - which also seems to have a leaf fetish.
Photographs (Juveniles) - June 2003