a reply to: boymonkey74
Thanks for the cool videos.
Gotta say I'm a wee bit jealous of the young lady being able to work with these very clever birds.
And I have to say that I am somewhat jealous of the Raven getting all of that wonderful attention from such a lovely young lady.
I've always enjoyed watching the ravens and crows. Not only are they beautiful creatures, but they are also among the most intelligent of any bird
species. As I understand it, they actually have a somewhat decipherable language as well.
A little over two years ago we had a massive number of Kingbirds
who decided to Summer in our area.
I believe they were lured by the corresponding massive number of wasps and hornets that we suffered with that year.
Kingbirds are notorious for protecting their nesting territory. And, of course, the Crows are notorious for predating on smaller birds' nests. I was
absolutely amazed at how the Kingbirds worked together to drive the crows away whenever the crows were brave enough to breach their perimeter. Not
only did they work in pairs, I often saw three or more taking turns pecking at the crows while they flew away.
At one point it seemed as if the Kingbirds were taking great delight in catching an unsuspecting crow in their territory and going after it. As the
crow would try to escape, it would cross into the territory of another pair, who had already been warned by the guttural call of their neighbors.
They would then pick up the attack and usher the crow out of their territory into the waiting arms of their
neighbors. I once observed a crow
who was attacked for at least two or three blocks by one squadron of Kingbirds to the next.
The species name for the Eastern Kingbird is Tyrannus tyrannus
, meaning Tyrant of tyrants. But I started referring to them as Tyrannus
because of the way the went after those crows who were easily four or five times their size. They looked like highly mobile, highly
agile, extremely quick tactical fighter planes going after a heavy bomber. Even on those rare occasions when the crow attempted to retaliate, the
Kingbird outmaneuvered it and counter attacked on its flank!
The most interesting result however was that after the Kingbirds left in the early Fall for their long sojourn South, the population of crows had
changed. The mature old guard had disappeared and a younger, unfamiliar set of crows had taken their place.
In the years since, I've seen fewer and fewer Kingbirds nesting in the area. But the population of Crows has continued to increase.