We're having a sort of crisis at work right now, so I've basically been here since Friday. I was up at 5 this morning and unfortunately had to stop for gas in the wee hours of the freezing November morning. Half asleep, I jumped out of the car and started filling my tank. After a few minutes, I woke up enough to be aware of my surroundings. The sound penetrated my sleep-fogged brain before anything else. The sound of many tiny crow voices screaming their CAW-CAW morning salutation at each other. It was then that I noticed how loud the sound was. It was still very dark, but as my eyes adjusted, I could see that outside of the bright fluorescent lighting of the gas bar, there were literaly hundreds of black moving shapes in the darkness. They were everywhere. I could hear the sounds of multitudes of tiny bird feet moving around on the overhang of the gas bar, above my head. There were too many to count. Nervous, but fascinated, I watched half of the flock suddenly take off and wing into the early morning darkness. That still left too many to count. I finished pumping the fuel and ran into the store to pay. I asked the clerk if it was like this every morning. She seemed unimpressed, and replied that they were there most nights until around this time. I ran back out to the truck and pulled out my camera to see if I could take some video. Because it's dark, it's hard to see them, but maybe you can get an idea by watching this....
After taking this video, I started the truck. I must have startled the flock perching on the roof because they all took off. Mass amounts of bird feces dropped out of the sky like little bombs of filth and disease (thank god I was in the truck and protected under the gas bar canopy). I couldn't believe the sound. The sheer number of wings required to make that much noise was staggering to my imagination. I don't particularly like birds (except the cute songbirds), and find them scary in large quantities. I was totally freaked out.
I've noticed in the last few years, that the amount of crows that show up during harvest time is increasing. When I drive home from work in the early evening, they blacken the sky. I will try to get you some pictures tonight. They reek havoc in the city, particularly on garbage day when they rip apart bags and drag garbage all over the streets. The city does nothing, other than advise people to purchase crow-proof garbage containers.
More crow craziness coming soon.