Though Fish Crows have been seen and heard in our area (Piedmont) for several weeks, Saturday (3/6) was the first sighting for me at the Museum. If I hadn’t heard them first I would have passed them off as American Crows. Although Fish Crows are a bit smaller the two species look very much alike. Luckily, their calls are a bit different. Fish Crows sound like an American Crow with its nose pinched as it calls, it’s very nasal.
It’s very difficult to gauge the bird’s size in flight, but sometimes you can distinguish the two by size alone or by the cadence of their wing-beat , but I wouldn’t bank on either.
Most Fish Crows leave our area in winter so it’s a sort of spring right-of-passage to see them each year at this time, one of the undeniable signs that spring is upon us.
As far as the Leps, Saturday also brought out a few butterflies. A Questionmark, American Snout and Mourning Cloak were seen.
Greg Dodge is a professional naturalist as well as a writer, videographer and producer of natural history DVDs. His images have been used in various TV productions, museum displays, and corporate videos. Above all, he has a fascination and passion for all things natural.
He can be found Tuesday thru Saturday in Explore the Wild, Catch the Wind, or on the Dinosaur Trail. Ask him what’s new in the wild!