White-necked Raven

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White-necked Raven
From Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Corvidae
Genus: Corvus
Species: C. albicollis
Binomial name
Corvus albicollis
Latham, 1790
Distribution map

The White-necked Raven (Corvus albicollis) is somewhat smaller (50–54 cm in length) than the Common Raven or indeed its nearest relative, the Thick-billed Raven C. crassirostris.

Description[edit]

Profile of head - taken at the Cincinnati Zoo

The White-necked Raven has a much shorter tail than the Common Raven, as well as a deeper bill with a white tip that is almost as strongly arched as that of the Thick-billed Raven. Though predominantly black, the throat, breast and neck show a faint purple gloss. There is a large patch of white feathers on the back of the lower neck.

Soars well with shallower wingbeats than other Corvidae.[2]

Measurements[edit]

  • Length 50 – 54 cm [3]
  • Wing 376 – 430 mm (17 unsexed birds)[3]
  • Weight 762 - 865g [3]

Voice[edit]

Often described as a raven with a sore throat, it has very similar calls to the Common Raven, but with a more husky note. It has a croak like the raven but with a more whispering note added.

Distribution and habitat[edit]

It occurs in eastern and southern Africa in open, mountainous country. It is quite commonly found in small towns and villages as long as there are mountains or hills for roosting and nesting relatively nearby.

Behaviour[edit]

Most of this bird's food is obtained from the ground, but it will take food from trees as well. It has been seen to drop a tortoise from a height on to hard ground, preferably on rocks, and then swoop down to eat it, or even pick it up again if not sufficiently broken. White-necked Ravens will also readily take carrion from road kills. Fruit, grain, insects, small reptiles, peanuts and human food are also readily taken and the bird forages in back yards and gardens quite openly.

It is often found in the company of other scavengers such as kites or vultures.

Nests are a bowl of sticks lined with grass hair and wool found mainly on a cliff ledge but will occasionally nest in a tree. There are usually 3-5 eggs laid.

Photo Image Links[edit]

Video links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Corvus albicollis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa. ISBN 0-620-17583-4. 
  3. ^ a b c Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa. The John Voelker Bird Book Fund. p. 477. ISBN 0-620-17583-4. 

External links[edit]