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Common Raven Corvus corax


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Common Raven
credit:  David Hofmann/CCSA

© Lang Elliot/ (audio)

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Alternate name: Northern Raven

Family: Corvidae, Crows, Magpies, Jays view all from this family

Description ADULT Has mainly black plumage but, in good light, an oily or metallic sheen is discernible. JUVENILE Similar, but has paler eye and brownish tinge to plumage.

Dimensions Length: 21-27" (53-69 cm)

Habitat Widespread and fairly common resident in a wide range of habitats from tundra, mountains, and farmland, to deserts in southwest.

Observation Tips Size, coloration, and long, wedge-shaped tail usually make identification in flight easy.

Range Southwest, Northwest, Alaska, Eastern Canada, Mid-Atlantic, Plains, Southeast, Rocky Mountains, Great Lakes, California, Texas, New England, Western Canada

Voice Utters a loud and deep cronk call.

Discussion Large and impressive bird, and North Americs's largest corvid. Appreciably larger than American Crow and easily recognized on the ground by its more massive bill and the shaggy throat that appears most ruffled when the bird is calling. In flight, recognized by the long, thick neck and wedge-shaped tail. Diet is varied and opportunistic, taking eggs and young of smaller birds in season, and carrion at other times. Incredibly aerobatic, tumbling and rolling in midair; often seen in pairs. Sexes are similar.