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Want Your Own Murder of Crows? Start Here

How to attract crows to your yard.

The term “murder” to refer to a group of crows has its origin in old folktales about how crows would gather to discuss the fate of one of their own, or because they were often seen as an omen of death. Nowadays, though, stories abound of people making friends with their local crows and ravens, and even exchanging gifts. If you want your own murder, here’s one way to get started.

YouTuber The Suburban Morrigan has been documenting her adventures observing and feeding local wildlife from her home in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. Her favorite animals to interact with are crows, and she has devised clever techniques to attract crows to her yard without providing unintended feasts for invasive starlings or other animals.

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In this video, The Suburban Morrigan goes into detailed explanation about her recent experiment with a “crow bar” an innovative bird feeder designed specifically to attract and feed corvids (crows, ravens, magpies and other members of this bird group). Utilizing some domed, mini-desert plates she found on Amazon, she built a bird feeder that would be a challenge for the smaller (and, let’s face it, dumber) starlings to open, while proving and intriguing challenger the stronger and smarter crows. She filled the little domes with dry cat kibble (a favorite corvid treat) and waited.

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If you’re having a bad day, I highly recommend watching the trials and travails of these plucky crows as they slowly but surely divine the secrets of this feeder. Their little triumphs, petty squabbles, and fascinating vocalizations over the course of this video are delightful to behold. It’s easy to see why this woman has become so fascinated with the animals, and you learn a lot about crow habits and behavior from observing their adventures. 

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