Thursday, 22 November 2012

Chihuahuan raven

Cirvus cryptoleucus

Photo by Dave Beaudette (Flickr)

Common name:
Chihuahuan raven (en); corvo-da-planície (pt); corbeau à cou blanc (fr); cuervo llanero (es); weißhalsrabe (de)

Order Passeriformes
Family Corvidae

This species is found is found in the southern United States , from Colorado and Kansas down to Arizona, New Mexico and Texas, and in northern Mexico.

These birds are 46-53 cm long and have a wingspan of 104-110 cm. They weigh 380-670 g.

The Chihuahuan raven is mainly found in dry, open grassland with scattered trees and scrubs, but also in dry scrublands and arable land from sea level up to an altitude of 2.400 m.

They are omnivorous, eating large insects, cultivated grains, carrion, eggs, young birds, fruits, lizards, small mammals, garbage.

Chihuahuan ravens breed in May-July. They either nest in loose colonies or in lonely pairs. The nest is an pen cup of sticks with softer lining, such as wool, fur, cotton, paper, rope, tree bark, grass, or yucca fibres. It is usually placed in a low tree or on human-made structure, such as machinery, building, or utility pole, 2-12 m above the ground. There the female lays 3-8 green to blue eggs with brown blotches, which are incubated by both parents for 18-21 days. The chicks are fed by both parents and fledge 28-31 days after hatching.

IUCN status -  LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and the population has shown a stable trend over the last 4 decades. 

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