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The Language of Crows

Night-black; void-black; black as December-seas – crows can be encountered like silhouette cut-outs on a sunny day; you can’t expect them to move, to soar, to have life. They sit sentinel and watching. Maybe that is why this effusive bird has garnered such a dire reputation through the ages, from being the harbinger of death and the herald of war to even having the title ‘carrion’ appended to its name.

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Winter Visitors

Outside my [optimistically titled] office there is a field and a tree, and the tree is a regular host to the visitors coming to pick through our garden. Here is just a few of them. A young buzzard looking rather maudlin for itself – note how well the dun colour of its coat camouflages with even the winter-denuded tree.

Young buzzard, Wales

An older buzzard, looking rather svelte.

Mature Buzzard, Wales

These are all terrible pictures, but I love this one as it shows some of the amazing overlay of feather-geometries the larger bird has to have to keep it warm.

Young Buzzard, Wales

And of course, our good friends the crows.

Crow gang, Wales

Although there are a number of crow colonies in the area that I live, it is only three that regularly come to this sitting-tree (the same tree that the buzzards like to perch on). I like to think that they must be a family group – or young adolescents perhaps?

Crow Gang, Wales.


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