Hooded Crow

Hooded Crow

Scotch crow, Danish crow, Grey crow (Ireland)

Kingdom
Phylum
Class
Family
Genus
SPECIES
Corvus cornix
Population size
Unknown
Life Span
16 yrs
WEIGHT
510 g
LENGTH
48-52 cm
WINGSPAN
105 cm

The Hooded crow is an ashy grey bird with black head, throat, wings, tail, and thigh feathers, as well as a black bill, eyes, and feet. Like other corvids, it is an omnivorous and opportunistic forager and feeder.

Distribution

Hooded crows are found across Northern, Eastern, and Southeastern Europe, as well as parts of the Middle East and northeast Africa. Some birds are migratory and may move further south in winter. Hooded crows live in various habitats such as woodland edges, coastal cliffs, inshore islands, estuaries, moorland, cultivated areas, city parks, and gardens.

Hooded Crow habitat map

Geography

Climate zones

Habits and Lifestyle

Hooded crows are social birds; they live in pairs ad may also feed in groups. They are active during the day spending most of the time searching for food. Hooded crows are known for their habit of hiding food, especially meat or nuts, in places such as rain gutters, flower pots, or in the earth under bushes, to feed on it later. Other crows often watch if another one hides food and then search this place later when the other crow has left.

Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition

Hooded crows are omnivores and scavengers. They feed on insects, berries, grain, mollusks, crabs, and carrion. On coastal cliffs, they often steal eggs of gulls, cormorants, and other birds. Hooded crows may even enter the burrow of the puffin to steal eggs.

Mating Habits

MATING BEHAVIOR
REPRODUCTION SEASON
varies with location
INCUBATION PERIOD
17-19 days
INDEPENDENT AGE
6-8 weeks
BABY NAME
chick
BABY CARRYING
4-6 eggs

Hooded crows are monogamous and form long-lasting pair bonds. Nesting occurs later in colder regions: mid-May to mid-June in northwest Russia, Shetland, and the Faroe Islands, and late February in the Persian Gulf region. In warmer parts of the European Archipelago, laying occurs in April. Hooded crows place their bulky stick nests in tall trees, but cliff ledges, old buildings, and pylons may also be used. Nests are occasionally placed on or near the ground. The female lays 4 to 6 brown-speckled blue eggs and incubates them alone for 17-19 days, fed by the male. The chicks are altricial; they hatch blind and helpless and fledge after 32 to 36 days. They remain dependant on their parent for 2-3 weeks more and become reproductively mature at 2-3 years of age.

Population

Population threats

Hooded crows don't face any major threats at present.

Population number

Presently, the Hooded crow is not included in the IUCN Red List and its conservation status has not been evaluated.

Fun Facts for Kids

  • The Hooded crow is locally known as a 'hoodie' in Scotland and in German, it is called 'mist crow' ('Nebelkrähe').
  • When feeding, Hooded crows drop mollusks and crabs to break them, and an old Scottish name for empty sea urchin shells was "crow's cups".
  • Crows are now considered to be among the world's most intelligent animals. Some crow species are capable of not only tool use, but also tool construction!

References

1. Hooded Crow on Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hooded_crow

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