Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Chihuahuan Raven

Chihuahuan Raven, Corvus cryptoleucus
The Chihuahuan Raven is the size of a crow, but with the shape of a raven, and, as with many birds, vocalization is easiest for distinction. They can be found year round throughout most of Texas, parts of Arizona and New Mexico, and south into Mexico with preference for dry grasslands, arid regions, scrub, and yucca flats. Unlike its Common Raven cousin, the Chihuahuan Raven is more sociable and can often be seen in flocks of up to several hundred during winter. The base of the feathers of the Chihuahuan Raven is also white, unique in North America, but not uncommon in other crows and ravens around the world, and is difficult to see without aid from the wind. Their nest of twigs, often those of thorny mesquite trees, may be reused in subsequent years. The female will lay an average of five eggs and both parents bring food to the hatchlings. Chihuahuan Ravens are omnivorous and will consume anything from insects and grains to carrion and frogs. They can sometimes be found near garbage or landfill, or else sitting on a pole.