JackDaw


The bird is called as Corvus Monedula scientifically and well known as western jackdaw or European daw. There are lot of people who would know it simply as ‘daw’. The bird is a small species and falls in the genus of ravens & crows. The bird has a black plumage and grey coloured napes which can help in distinction. The bird is omnivorous in its eating habits and found commonly across Europe, North Africa and western Asia. There are four subspecies which have been identified for this bird by the ornithologists.
The name was kept during 16th century with Jack being used for small animal forms and daw being a native English word. The bird is around 39 cms in length and known to be the smallest species in the Corvus genus. The bird is mostly black or at times, greyish black. The cheeks, neck and napes are normally light grey in colour and also a little silver in tone at times. As these birds fly, their style, speed at which they move and amount of wing beats differentiate these birds from others in the family. The neck is short in size and a little thicker. The bill is quite small. These birds move around in flocks in tight formations and when on ground, they have brisk movements. Also the male and the females are similar in size and appearance at all the ages, which makes them tough to differentiate. These birds make a squeaky sound during the flight and as they sit down on trees, they make sounds which give you a feeling that they are chattering among themselves. They are also good at making drawn-out call in case of alarms.
These birds are found over a huge area around North West Africa and almost every part of Europe and British Isles and Scandinavia. The population of this bird is huge and spread across the globe. Their population living at the eastern and northern end would migrate; else they tend to be resident birds. These birds love to live around pastures, coastal cliffs and towns, woodlands and steppes which are wooded. The birds are quite gregarious in nature and move in groups around. The birds, male and females when they pair up, they bond for lifetime and then always stay together. The size of these flocks may go up during autumn and these birds tend to participate in communal roosting. These birds are also good at pairing up and moving with other species of crows. The birds like the magpies, have a tendency to steal shiny things which they can then use to keep in their nests.
These birds normally eat whatever is available on the ground, but can get to trees for the same. They also eat the snails, spiders and similar insects available easily.
These birds do employ different methods of feeding which can range from scattering, probing the soil, digging sometimes, pecking, and jumping. The birds breed in colonies and are monogamous in their life.