Bird Observer - The New England Birding Journal

Bird Observer

The Birding Journal for New England

February 2018

Vol. 46, No. 1

A History of Winter Crow Roosts and a Visit to a Roost in Lawrence, Massachusetts

Dana Duxbury-Fox


American Crows. Illustration by Barry Van Dusen.

"If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows." Reverend Henry Ward Beecher

American Crows (Corvus brachyrhynchos) and Fish Crows (C. ossifragus) traditionally roost communally in winter. Across their range, many of these roosts have been in existence for a number of years. Very large roosts tend to occur in regions where there is abundant food, and also where northern migrants augment resident crow populations, as in Oklahoma (Good 1952).

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