Around this time last year I was both delighted and intrigued when a reader emailed me about a very usual crow showing up in her yard. Unlike its flock mates this crow was not black, but white and brown, like the kind of milked-down coffee that inspires the comment “would you like some coffee with your cream?”. Understanding what would cause such a unique coloration in her crow sent me down a most unexpected rabbit hole where the science of what I call ‘caramel crows’ turned out to be somewhat subject to mystery.
Within months of publishing that article, I couldn’t believe my luck to encounter a caramel crow of my own named Blondie. Whereas the science of their pigmentation may be up for debate, their beauty most certainty is not and I considered myself exceptionally lucky to lay eyes on one in person.
Now, it seems my perception of their rarity may not have been quite justified as I have since discovered yet a second caramel crow, who I call Ferdinand, in a completely different part of the city. Unlike Blondie, who lives exclusively in a residential area, Ferdinand’s haunts include a public park. I won’t give his or her precise location, but if you’re a Seattle native I encourage you to use the clues provided in the text and photos of this post to see if you can find Ferdinand. If you do use the hashtag #FoundFerdinand to update us on its activities but remember not to give away its precisely location. This is both to encourage people to get outside and explore on their own, and to protect Ferdinand’s safety. If seeming him in person is not possible I hope these photos will suffice. As a last bit of fun feel free to let me know in the comments who you think wore it better, Ferdinand or Blondie.