Monthly Archives: December 2016

Are you playing #CrowOrNo yet?

Crows, ravens, magpies, even blackbirds or other non-corvid species can be tricky to distinguish from one another if you’re a beginning or even experienced birder given the right angle or blurry photo.  While some of it is a matter of learning key field markers, a big part of effectively learning to distinguish these species is an eye for the subtle differences in portion or appearance that comes with practice.  I believe learning these skills is not only fun, but makes us more informed corvid lovers and birders.

To that aim, I’ve started a weekly #CrowOrNo “quiz” on my Instagram (@swiftcrow) and Twitter (@kswift_crow) accounts.  Every Wednesday at 11:30 AM PST, I’ll post one photo and it’s up to you to decide whether or not it’s really a crow.  At the end of the day I’ll share the answer and any tips or tricks that would have helped to discern the true species.  Play, share, or simply spectate.  Whatever you’re comfortable with is fine for me, as long as you’re enjoying the process and learning more about these wonderful animals!  Check out the photos below for examples from past weeks.  I hope to see you there!

Oh, and have photos you think would make good fodder for the game?  Send them my way!

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Filed under Birding, Corvid trivia, Just for fun

Invitation to hear me speak

Salutations lovely blog followers!  This is just a quick note to explain my absence over the last couple of months, and invite you to see what it’s all been for.

For whatever reason (ambition, insanity, desire to please, capability, or the combinations therein) I took on a little more than I could chew this quarter.  Teaching, taking courses, taking my qualifying exams, submitting a paper and, as a cherry on top, taking my general exam (i.e the dissertation proposal).  I love my blog, and you folks and the aspects of crows that I can share with you are constantly on my mind.  At the end of the day though, my priority is my graduate work and sometimes the blog needs to take a backseat.

I do not tell you this in the hopes you’ll understand, I tell you this because I already know you understand.  But I also know you follow the blog because you are passionate about crows and to that end, I want to invite you to see the presentation of my dissertation proposal this Monday, Dec 5th.

While this talk is intended to impress my faculty committee enough that they approve me as a PhD candidate, it is given to a room of largely first year students, and is therefore designed to be inclusive of all backgrounds and knowledge levels.  Crucially, this seminar is also open to the entire community, so you won’t find any awkwardness strolling in as a member of the public and not as a UW student.  I hope to see you there!

invitation

For a map to Kane Hall click here.

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