You'll probably find answers to your questions in a wonderful book on crow
behavior: Gifts of the Crow by John Marzluff. He also has several
fascinating videos on YouTube.
Hilke Breder, Brattleboro
On Sat, Feb 20, 2016 at 7:43 AM, Isis Erb <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Personally speaking I would continue to observe without interfering as it
> sounds like there's no obvious human cause. But if certainly keep notes &
> maybe try to video some of their action, or get still photos. It certainly
> sounds quite fascinating and is live to hear how it resolves.
> I did see this take place last summer in a group of five crows, where two
> went at it fast and furious for some time (several minutes at least, with
> pauses to rest before resuming that behavior). Eventually they stopped and
> a while later all flew off together. I had wondered if it hadn't been two
> young crows trying to determine 'rank' within their larger family(?) group.
> Interesting way to begin the day!
> Isis Erb
> Burlington, VT
> On Saturday, February 20, 2016, Maeve Kim <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > Starting at 7:00 AM and ending just about two minutes ago, there has been
> > a tremendous racket in my back yard. I counted eighteen crows and at
> > three ravens. I assumed they were mobbing a raptor, but I looked and
> > without finding one. It appeared that the focus of attention was two
> > on the ground, engaged in what looked like vicious combat. There’s no
> > obvious blood or feathers strewn around, but the two have been tumbling
> > wrestling for a long time now and their struggles have covered several
> > square yards of lawn. There are long minutes where the one on the bottom
> > lies completely still, and then they’ll start tussling again, their
> > locked and reaching out toward each other with their bills. Right now
> > birds are just lying there, breathing heavily.
> > Any thoughts about what’s going on? Do crows have battles for dominance?
> > If so, I can see why a struggle between two crows would attract so many
> > other crows, and why would ravens appear?
> > I'm tempted to go out and see if the combatants would separate but I’m
> > also thinking maybe I shouldn’t interfere. What do you all think?
> > Maeve Kim, Jericho Center