Town Raven

Town Raven
In flight


This is a diary, or rather, field notes written up each day, with the latest entry at the top.

To get the full story, start at the bottom entry in the archive, and read upwards.
Then read the current diary entries from the bottom up as well.

Once you've got the full story, just visit and read the new story for the day!


Location Map

Location Map
This shows where we walk and meet the ravens
The yellow and pink squiggly lines are two walks we take. The yellow one is the one we usually do. The squigglyness indicates how Madame visits her several important sniffing check-points!
We stop several times to feed the ravens, and you can see where they come from.

If you right-click on the image and open it in a new tab, you can then zoom in to see more details.

Monday, 16 November 2009

The recognition experiment! (Still Nov 11th, 2009)

But now - the crunch experiment!

I came back from the Cathedral - on the way there, having walked under the horse chestnuts, the ravens didn't approach me. 
Coming back, there were numerous couples and groups of threes with their numerous dogs walking round the ravens' field, in opposite directions to each other. 
I assumed therefore that this was not going to work.

But then I saw one raven fly onto a smallish tree in front of the Parks' Dept shed, this side of the spinney. Still - far too many people and dogs around, I thought ...

I was so wrong! 

As soon as I was mid-way between the top (our) and the bottom enclosure, he came swooping down, into the open field, and hopped closer. Now I was not wearing dog-walking clothes, but a nice long skirt and jacket ...

Well well well..! 

Mind - he made himself look very thin again, so he cannot have been that certain that it was me, his food source. However, he did not approach any of the other dog walkers, not even those who'd walked across this open field before I got there.

I threw him a tiny piece of cheese - he took it. Then the timid raven appeared as well. The two pieces of cheese I threw went straight into the bold raven, but as he hopped off to hide them, the timid one managed to get the third piece.
Then I walked to the enclosure, and fed them some more. 

So its me they recognise - that must be it. 
After all, Madame had been left at home, can't have a dog in the Cathedral! 

Also - they did not approach the group of three, one of whom was Val with Tilly, a nice, smallish Border Collie. and Val wore a red waterproof jacket. These three dog walkers had come past the spinney into the field while my raven was sitting on that tree, watching me come from the other direction - a direction he'd never seen me come from before. 

In addition, the dog walkers kept standing around for a few minutes, waiting for their various dogs to reappear from behind the bushes - so me standing still in the field cannot really have been a deciding factor.

As I knew all three ladies from other dog walks, we went off together and I told them all about it. We went to the big field, again the usual way, under the trees, and as we stood there, waiting for one of the terriers to come back, the bold raven flew towards us and sat on a lowish branch right above us. I wonder if he wanted some more food from me. Well, he is the bold one, after all!

This morning's experiment has been truly amazing - I wish I knew how the recognise me. Perhaps it really is the hair. So somehow, sometime in the next few days I'll have to cover that up and go on my own, without Madame. That should confirm it.

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