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.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Bird at Play

We know crows are very intelligent birds and they often exhibit playful behavior. But have you ever seen one sledding in the snow? The accompanying video shows a hooded crow in Russia sliding down a snowy roof on a jar lid.

It is a remarkable demonstration of deliberate play by a bird. The crow uses a found object, searches for the best sledding path, and slides down the roof repeatedly (for fun?).

Alexis Madrigal, a senior editor for The Atlantic, put the issue of crows and playful behavior to Alan Kamil at the Center for Avian Intelligence at the University of Nebraska.

"It is in keeping with the general reputation of corvids," said Kamil, after watching the video. "I don't know what to make of it scientifically but it is a cool example of a play-like behavior in a corvid."

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