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San Diego Humane Society

Crows and Ravens: Coexisting with Wildlife

Baby Crows or Ravens

If you find a baby crow out of the nest, immediate action should be taken. Putting the baby back in the nest is always the best option. If you are unable to put it back, then it should be taken to a licensed rehabilitator.

Juvenile Crows or Ravens

Juvenile crows are almost fully feathered, eyes open, and able to move around well on their feet. It is normal for a crow to be on the ground at this stage in life. Crows learn how to fly from the ground up. At this stage they are still being taken care of by the parents. If the parents are around, the juvenile crow will probably be vocal and spend a little bit more time in the open. When the parents are out foraging for food, the juveniles tend to be quiet, and hide in bushes. The only time you should intervene is if they are in imminent danger of being attacked by a cat, dog, or hit by a car. Crows are very intelligent, and tend to build their nest in safe places. If you do find a crow injured or in danger, it should be taken to a licensed rehabilitator.

There is one species of Ravens and one species of Crows in the San Diego area of which Project Wildlife helps about 600 annually. They belong to a family called corvids which also include birds like Scrub Jays and Magpies. They can be told apart by the fact that Ravens are much larger and usually are seen in pairs that mate for life, while Crows are in larger and noisier groups. Young birds can be as large as their parents and can be identified by their blue/grey eyes and the corners of the mouth will be pink. They are considered by some as the most intelligent of birds.

What to do if you found a Crow or Raven 

  • Watch it for an hour to make sure the parents come before trying to intervene.
  • If the parents don't return keep the animal "warm, dark and quiet" and do not feed it if determined it should come to the Care Center.
  • Remember that these young birds are almost a large as their parents
  • The babies can be identified by their blue/grey eyes and the corners of the mouth will be pink.
  • If they are fully feathered, other Crows or Ravens are around and their are no predators, its best to leave them alone.

When does a raven or crow need to come to the Project Wildlife Care Center?

  1. It is a baby (blue/grey eyes and pink mouth) and the parents are known to be dead or do not come around to feed it.
  2. The baby is newly hatched and the nest cannot be found or is too high to reach
  3. Injured or caught by a dog or cat. A cat-caught bird should always come in because of a cat's highly infectious mouth.
  4. A pet or child has brought a baby from parts unknown.
  5. The bird is falling over to one side.
  6. Is weak or shivering.
  7. Is being attacked by other birds. 

If you've found an injured animal and need information on where to take it, please call: (619) 299-7012

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