Corvus Corax – Common Raven

Distinguishing Features – Completely black with purplish or violet reflections, most pronounced on back wings and tail. Male and female indistinguishable but female is slightly smaller.

  • Size – 56 – 67 cm
  • (22.5 – 26.75 in)

American Crow


Widespread; prefers wide open spaces for foraging and woodlots for nesting; anywhere with an easily accessed supply of food. Built-up rural areas, roadsides and fields are their favourite habitat, as are garbage dumps.


Generally in cavities of trees; sometimes on cliff ledges. The large nest is made of twigs, lined with any number of available soft materials, such as grass, moss, leaves or hair.

  • Eggs, 3 – 4; greenish, spotted randomly with brown blotches.
  • Incubation period is 20 – 21 days.


The Common Raven is often mistaken for the American Crow but is much larger and sports a much larger bill.

The Raven’s call lends the best distinction between it and the Crow. It is a hoarse croak or Kwawk.

Like its cousin, the Crow, it is omnivorous and will eat practically anything.

While we’re discussing big, blackbirds, you can check out our post on the American crow.