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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Japanese Crows


I am interested in crows and their intelligence and habits. I once read a book called The Caw of the Wild by Barb Kirpluk and learned the birds are especially fond of peanuts. This information proved quite accurate and now I am known in the local crow communities as "the Lady with the Goods."

Japanese Crows.

When I came to Japan I was eager to see what the native crows were like. I had read various newspaper accounts describing the birds' aggressive behavior, and whenever I watched a Taiga Drama and heard the sound of crows cawing I knew it meant something bad was about to happen.

Japanese Crows.

I first heard the distinctive, deep and raspy voice of a Japanese crow while in Ueno Park in Tokyo, and I thought "Wow." The crows spoke the word "caw" distinctly. As I enjoyed my soda and yakitori, the crows hovered close by, hoping for a dropped morsel or a free handout. Crows are an opportunistic sort. I tossed a small piece of chicken in the grass and instantly, a crow swooped, snatched the food, and took off. The omnivore crow suffers no qualms about consuming their fellow avian, albeit roasted and seasoned.

In Nagoya I spotted a murder of crows in the surrounding castle park. I had peanuts to share. Would they appeal to Japanese crows? Ah, the answer is yes. Free food is free food, whether in Japan or the USA. Except for their larger size and impressive vocal cords, the Japanese crows are just like their North American cousins.

Japanese Crows.

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