A Murder of Crows

Crows live everywhere in the world except Antarctica and are a part of myths and legends in many cultures. Their reputation in the stories varies from comical to frightening, godlike or wise, bringers of light and bringers of death, though a “murder” of crows refers to a flock of crows, and not to anything murderous at all. They may be all these things, but what we are learning is that they are especially smart. New research has shown that they are among the most intelligent animals on the planet. They use tools as only elephants and chimpanzees do, and recognize 250 distinct calls. It has also been discovered they possess the ability to recognize individual human faces and pick them out of a crowd up to two years later – a trick that might make even Hitchcock shiver with fright. These are social birds that mate for life and raise their young for up to five years. Crows might have a scary reputation, but what may prove to be the scariest thing about them is how much they know about us, and how little we know about them! Directed and produced by Susan Fleming. PBS NATURE.

Introduced by Brad Knudsen, Refuge Manager, National Wildlife Visitor Center, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

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