Common Raven

ANIMAL:
Common Raven Corvus corax

Type of Animal:
Corvid

Habitat:
Forests, woodlands, treeline areas, mountains (as high as 20,600 ft), desert, seacoasts, sagebrush, tundra, grasslands, rural settlements, towns, cities, suburban/urban areas, coastal cliffs, prairies w/ nearby cliffs, island areas, coastal areas, parks w/ tall trees, alpine parklands, tidal flats, agricultural fields, orchards, savanna, rocky coastlines, meadows, near human establishments

Location(s):
Alaska, Canada, Greenland, W, NC, & NE US all the way down into Appalachia, Mexico, Eurasia, C Asia, N Africa (Morocco, N Algeria, Tunisia, N Libya), Asia Minor & Caucasus region through Syria, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, N India, Himalayan region, parts of China

Appearance:
Large slightly curved bill, long wedge-shaped tail, largest corvid species, birds in colder regions largest, black plumage, shaggy throat feathers, dark brown iris, juveniles duller w/ blue-gray iris, N African Ravens smallest w/ shortest throat hackles & strongly arched culmen (upper ridge of bill), Tibetan Ravens largest w/ longest throat hackles, Northern Ravens have largest bills, from smallest to largest subspecies-N African Raven, Western, N Eurasian, Icelandic, S Eurasian, Kamchatkan, Northern Raven, Tibetan Raven

Food/Diet:
Carrion, refuse, small mammals, birds (up to size of geese), eggs, arthropods (adults & larvae), worms, fruit, grains, reptiles, amphibians, seeds, buds, human food, mammal poop, fish, pet food, nuts, acorns, newborn calves, lambs, goat kids, mollusks

Status in Wild:
Stable

Conservation:
Not applicable

Lifestyle:
Flocks of 2-16 birds. Break off into monogamous pairs for breeding/nesting season. Family groups sometimes seen w/ monogamous pair & 1-2 sets of offspring, each set w/ 3-7 chicks.

Additional Info:

Called:
Male: Cock
Female: Hen
Young: Chick
Group: Unkindness

Weight:
Adult: 1.51-3.58 lbs
Young: 0.59 lbs

Gestation:
20-25 days

Life Span:
15 years in wild, 30-40 years in captivity

Height:
1.84-2.26 ft

Body Length:
1.84-2.26 ft

Tail Length:
3 in

Main predators of adults are bears, foxes, coyotes, very large owls, & eagles. Strange ravens, crows, hawks, owls, large falcons, martens, & raccoons prey on chicks.

Fun Fact(s):
One of Edgar Allan Poe’s most famous works is The Raven.
 
Many European cultures saw them as evil in disguise.
 
Viking god Odin has 2 ravens, Hugin (thought) & Munin (memory).
 
Many American Indian & First Nations tribes view Raven as sly trickster involved in creation.
 
These birds are highly intelligent-very likely some of the smartest birds in the world.
 
Play an important role at Tower of London-after Great Fire of London in 1666, Charles II ordered at least 6 birds be kept at tower. Since then, there’s always been at least 6 birds there. It was said killing them was bad omen & kingdom would not outlive last killed raven.

246 thoughts on “Common Raven

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