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April 22, 2011 / hhsiegrist

The Common Raven

The Common Raven (Corvus corax) is a large bird whose habitat spans the whole northern hemisphere of Eurasia and North America. One of its natural advantages is that it can feed on anything. The other advantage is its high intelligence which was proved by its independent ability to solve problems. Unfortunately, this property led in the Middle Ages to the accusation that it cooperates with evil forces whereas the same phenomenon was venerated by the North American indigenous peoples.

The difference between the somewhat smaller Carrion Crow (Corvus corone) and the Common Raven ist the latter’s larger bill and a lozenge-shaped tail. Another difference is the voice of the raven which is deeper and also more varied.

In Switzerland its preferred habitat, large forests bordering on wide open areas, has shrunk over the last decades so that the raven was forced to retreat to the mountains. You find it in large numbers in the Alps as well as in the higher regions of the Jura mountains. That’s where I managed to shoot my first portraits of this fascinating bird:

It is a gregarious animal and is very often found in groups and large flocks

An excellent flyer

is not afraid of attacking gleefully larger birds of prey like the White-tailed Sea Eagle:

Taking pictures of the Common Raven is not very easy. It takes a long telephoto lens, preferably a hide, a lot of patience and some food (carrion) to attract the birds. Only then you can record its natural beauty and elegance and observe its behaviour clearly showing the animal’s intelligence and social competence.

All pictures from my homepage


One Comment

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  1. Rolf / Apr 22 2011 18:36

    Klasse Hans wie man im zweiten und dritten Foto die Zeichnung im dunklen Gefieder (hätte fast Fell geschrieben *g*) sieht. Auch Raben sind schöne Vögel.
    Frohe Ostern!

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