I walked out of work the other day and immediately heard a clans-worth of crow calls. The sky and trees were black with them, circling like a cyclone of bees.
I almost walked into a sign post as I headed to my car, eyes raised upward, seeking crow to human eye-hellos, my mouth forming a broad grin. I paused outside my car, asking the closest crow, the one who’d probably made a mess on my windshield, “So what’s up? Any big news? Perhaps some fresh road kill?”
As I drove, I followed the black forms, still circling and landing as if they were mapping my trail home. I looked up through my sunroof and kept seeing flashes of coal feathers zinging above me.
I glanced at the cars next to me, filled with people staring blindly ahead, some talking on their phones, and I wondered, “Don’t you see this? Isn’t it amazing?”
Sometimes I feel like I have the very best secret in the world and no one is willing to stop and listen.
I’m not sure what it is about crows – their size, their black feathers, how loud and bold they are – but something about them intrigues me. Seeing a group of crows or a single crow looking down from a building or tree feels like an omen.
Some people think this omen is death or bad luck, perhaps because the crow is a carrion bird and it’s black color makes them think of darkness and evil. But that’s not how I see crows. I know it’s only the young crows that are playful but still, I view them as being a watchful, curious bird with a sense of humor. I mean, they must just laugh at us humans parking our cars under one of their trees.
And like so many things and beings of nature, I can’t help but marvel at their existence – how they adapt to world that is ever changing for them as well as for us.
- If you’re curious, there’s a post on the “Winter Crow Invasion” on The Corvid Blog
- The Corvid Blog is a part of the Coyot.es Network, where there are activists, writers, and photographers with blogs focused on biodiversity, local landscapes, environmentalism, and study and protection of nature.