Saturday, March 15, 2014

Something to Crow about

Crows have been visiting our bird feeders lately.  Their visits have been sporadic all winter.  Some days I will not see a single crow and then the next day the snow will almost be black covered with scores of crows...or maybe I should say 'murder of crows.'  Those words sound strange to me.  Why is it called a 'murder' of crows instead of flock? 

There are a number of suggestions, most dating back to the 15th century English language.  Some think that since crows are scavengers and eat dead animals that death is a word associated with them. (Seems like a big jump from the word 'death' to 'murder', but I guess the phrase 'death of crows' sounds strange.)  Crows are thought of as omens of death and many authors have used the crow or the cawing of the crow as a sign of death or danger.  If you have the the PBS show, A Murder of Crows . It is fascinating and validates stories my father told me when I was young.
 I named this one Iridescence

My dad had a pet crow.  I wish I could remember what his name was, but since I can't I will rename it, Magic.  My father rescued Magic from some danger and they had an instant bond.  Magic would sit on my dad's shoulder as he walked to school.  When the school was in sight, Magic would fly off, but would be waiting on the fence post next to the railroad track when my dad was walking home at the end of the school day.   My dad told me that Magic was the smartest pet he ever had.  Magic understood what Dad would say to him.  They would talk to each other and were best buddies.
Ray named this one Maleficent

I always wanted a pet crow, but my father told me that only if I found one in need...that they were wild animals and needed to be wary of people.  Not everyone would be kind to crows and lots of people thought them pests...especially farmers and gardeners trying to grow crops.  So, I never had a pet crow.  But, I can enjoy watching and listening to them on the days they choose to visit our yard and have the treats we leave for them.

I often check my Animal Cards to read the message from an animal that visits me.  So, today I checked for Crow.  Here is the Animal Card for Crow.  I love the message!

Jamie Sams & David Carson
Illustration by Angela Werneke

Focus on the positive
Detach from negativity
See opportunity in every challenge.
I thank you Crow for visiting me this morning and hope to see you many more.


  1. Love the message of the crow. It was just what I needed today! Love following your blog!

  2. What great words to live by. I have never heard of a murder of crows. How interesting.

  3. Great post! It brought to mind a kid I went to school with in the 4th grade. His pet crow would follow the school bus, wait outside of the school all day, and then follow the bus home. As loyal a pet as there is!

  4. I never knew that crows could be pets. I'm of the mind they are pests. However Iridescence is beautiful in that light.

  5. New word added to my vocabulary today: murder of crows! Message from the crow is also important!

  6. Jackie,
    My grandma was never a fan of the crows coming to visit her feeder. For the most part, they stay in the tops of the trees and out in the fields near our house when they visit. I can't imagine having a pet crow. That had to be something.