Finding a raven in
Southern New England is still not easy, but knowing how to separate a crow and a raven can be. While in some ways a raven is large crow there are actually visual clues that can help you identify a raven without the lucky comparison of a crow sitting next to it. Ravens are rarely seen in numbers larger than two or three. Their large beaks give them a “big nose” look and their tails have a distinct wedge shape that a Crow’s does not. Watch also for the long “fingers” of the wing, primary flight feathers that reach out into the sky and seem to spread further apart than a crow’s. Voice is another give away. While crows produce an incredible array of caws, clicks, snaps, and barks the raven is best known for a booming, throaty “aaaawwwack”. Think of a baritone compared to a tenor. Ravens also nest very early, beginning in the late winter. Listen for the call and response between a pair of birds carrying large sticks. Finding a raven’s nest early can provide weeks of watching.
January 18, 2012
When a Crow is a Raven
The Common Raven is a large member of the crow family (corvidae) at home whirling over the canyon lands of the southwest and bedfellow to wolves around a moose carcass in the great white north. Ravens hold a permanent place in the collective modern psyche: trickster and stealer of the sun, the cause for poetry, story, and rhyme. In the northeast however ravens float around the edge of the urbanized world like cowboys peering in the window of the mall; not scared just unclear to the purpose of this place. Bird watchers in Southern New England rarely see these large black birds however, in the past decade the Common Raven has been gaining breeding ground in
. In part due to the maturing forests, no longer logged for timber. Massachusetts