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The cosmopolitan world of the crow

East v west - the crow knows best

Some time ago on a visit to Rome, I noticed the crow in the city was the crow I associated with the wild moors and hills of Arran.

It was the hooded crow. I was puzzled.

The crow family is cosmopolitan and considered the most intelligent of birds. Their total brain-to-body mass ratio is equal to that of great apes. Crows are medium to large birds. Many species are black or black and grey; some are pied, while others are more colourful. Eight species breed in the UK. While all have been recorded on Arran, only four breed here: raven, jackdaw, carrion crow and hooded crow. It is the familiar carrion and hooded crows that are the focus for this article.

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