This Corvid family of birds is inspirational. They are used as symbols, mascots, even cake decorations! Here are some of the pictures I found involving corvids and cake.
I read an excellent article about corvids from their habitat to myths and legends about them in the May/June 2001 issue of Zoogoer. I think it is worth the read. Here is an excerpt: For centuries, a dark specter haunted the bloody battlefields of Europe. Waiting to feast on the dead, common ravens lined up at bloody clashes between invaders and invaded, tribes and kingdoms. War-weary observers could not ignore the jet-black scavengers, with their four-foot-wide wingspreads and cross-shaped flight profiles. Ravens, not surprisingly, were branded harbingers of bad luck, or death. Away from the carnage, common ravens (Corvus corax) also coasted into folklore, legend, and language, strongly hinting that these creatures and their 100-plus brethren in the family Corvidae are not your average birds. Two ravens, Hugin (Thought) and Munin (Memory), rode the broad shoulders of the Norse god Odin. In Inuit legend, the raven became creator and trickster. In the Bible, Noah sent not only a dove but also a raven to seek land, as did many ancient mariners. Tame ravens still stroll within the Tower of London's walls, where for centuries they've been sequestered as guardians against invasion. One reason why ravens, crows, jackdaws, rooks, magpies, treepies, choughs, nutcrackers, and jays stand out is that they have above-average brains—proportionately, they possess the largest cerebral hemispheres of the feathered set. Plucky, crafty, curious, social, vocal, and adaptable, corvids, as family members are known, are among our most familiar yet enigmatic neighbors. On all continents save Antarctica, they flourish in backyards and wilderness, although more than 20 species barely hang on within shrinking habitats. Ethiopia's thick-billed raven (Corvus crassirostris), bigger than a red-tailed hawk, is the world's largest songbird, while the dun-colored Hume's ground-jay (Pseudopodoces humilis) of the Tibetan plains is the smallest family member. In between lies a broad spectrum of glossy, splashy, and plume-tailed characters. You can read the rest of the article here.
Here are the weekend crow photographs...
We haven't posted our personal crow photos in awhile, so I thought I'd do that today. I hope you enjoy them as much as we do.
The validity of the Crow Vending Machine has been put into question because of misinformation given to reporters. Josh Klein never worked with Binghamton University like he claimed but the newspaper didn't catch it. John Klein says it was a misunderstanding. Who knows what the truth is? I would like to see the experiment repeated a time or two to find out. Read more here.
Only last night he felt deadly sick, and, after a great deal of pain, two black crows flew out of his mouth and took wing from the room. ---Unattributed Author
To shoot at crows is powder flung away. ---Unattributed Author
Even the blackest of them all, the crow, Renders good service as your man-at-arms, Crushing the beetle in his coat of mail, And crying havoc on the slug and snail. - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ---Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Come, seeling night, Scarf up the tender eye of pitiful day, And with thy bloody and invisible hand Cancel and tear to pieces that great bond Which keeps me pale. Light thickens, and the crow Makes wing to th' rooky wood. Good things of day begin to droop and drowse, While night's black agents to their prey do rouse. ---William Shakespeare
The crow doth sing as sweetly as the lark When neither is attended; and I think The nightingale, if she should sing by day When every goose is cackling, would be thought No better a musician than the wren. How many thing by season seasoned are To their right praise and true perfection! ---William Shakespeare
As the many-winter'd crow that leads the clanging rookery home. ---Lord Alfred Tennyson
We know many people do not share our appreciation for crows and jays. They can often been seen as pests or bullies, particulary when it comes to backyard bird feeders. If you want to keep the crows and Jays away from your bird feeders, protecting your little birdies, you can throw out whole pieces of bread (away from the feeders), cereal flakes or corn chips. These big pieces of food are edible for all birds but intimidate most of the smaller birds. The smaller birds prefer the seeds and smaller nuts. While the crows and jays can hardly resist the bigger food sources thrown towards them. This will ensure that all the birds are fed and safer. Another way to entice the bigger birds with the bread is to spread suet on it --- they will be unable to resist this open-faced energy sandwich. Be sure not to throw out moldy bread. This can harm the birds and we DO NOT advocate harming any birds---particularly our beloved corvids. We also do not recommend putting bread out while it is raining because birds don't like soggy bread anymore than we do. The big birds and small birds can peacefully coexist in your yard or porch, if you just take a few extra steps. =)
If you find an injured bird, crow or not, you should call your local U.S. Wildlife Rehabilitator, Wild Animal Rescue Facility, Animal Control, Forest Ranger, Wildlife Preserve, local vet or Wildlife Protection Agency before doing anything. Ravens in particular are legally protected animals. You have a legal as well as moral reason not to handle them before getting expert advice. You should call a professional immediately. I did some research online and found some detailed information at the Raven's Aviary regarding this topic.