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Re: predator corvids

Arlene and all,


Excerpts from The Birds of North America online account for American Crow. From this it seems that preying on full-sized (not young) passerines is limited but well known. Probably the same for ravens but I didn’t check the account for them. I’d be curious how far the crow flew with the sparrow.  


Omnivorous. Wide variety of invertebrates (terrestrial and intertidal marine); amphibians; reptiles; small birds and mammals


Carries food to nest in antelingual pouch at base of throat. Transports larger food items in bill (e.g., clams, Bayer 1984c ; American Robin [Turdus migratorius ] nestling; CC) or occasionally in feet


 Pursues small birds, such as European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris ; Cuccia 1984) and House Sparrow (Passer domesticus ; Putnam 1992) in flight, to catch and kill them.


Takes eggs and/or nestlings of a wide variety of birds, such as Common Loon (Gavia immer ; McIntyre 1977a); ground-nesting ducks (Kalmbach 1937b); Least Tern (Brunton 1997); Pinyon Jay (Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus ; Marzluff 1985); Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica ; Verbeek 1973b); American Robin (CC); and Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis ; Wheelwright et al. 1997). 


Geoff Rogers

San Diego, CA


Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports