American crows are incredibly common. If you’ve never been curious about them, here are a few nuggets to pique your interest as you see them noisily going about their business in our city:
- American crows, like other birds, can see the color ultraviolet, which is invisible to humans.
- Corvids, the family of birds to which crows belong, are among the most intelligent species on earth. Only humans and one species of corvid, New Caledonian crows, are able to not only use tools, but also to fashion them. (Not even apes have been found to do that.)
- American crows can recognize individual humans, and they can remember them. They might even pass on the knowledge of an individual being a threat to their young, according to the research of University of Washington professor John Marzluff.
- How do small crow brains manage to process such complex information? Scientists think that it's because their neurons (brain cells) are packed much closer together than human neurons.
- Another thing that helps American crows survive and thrive: They live in families. Siblings often stick around to take care of younger crows.