About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Big black bird: American Crow

According to Birds of Michigan by Ted Black, American Crows are wary and intelligent birds that adapt to a variety of habitats. Their populations are just now recovering in mid Michigan from the first appearance of West Nile virus in the Western hemisphere in 1999. Their susceptibility to the virus made them a useful indicator of the West Nile activity.

However the American Crow is still often reviled for being a large, loud, messy, scavenger of garbage even though crows are one of the most intelligent birds around. Crows are impressive mimics, able to whine like a dog, cry like a child, squawk like a hen and laugh like a human.

They are abundant year-round residents in mid-Michigan. Crows group together in large flocks and interaction with other crows is very important to them. The average crow lives for twenty to thirty years. They have close family groups and usually mate for life. Juvenile crows typically leave their family at 3 to 4 years but will still return to visit.

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