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Raven

Corvus corax

Fiach dubh

Status: Widespread resident throughout Ireland, especially in upland areas.

Conservation Concern: Green-listed in Ireland. The European population is regarded as Secure.

Identification: Our largest breeding songbird, slightly larger than a Buzzard. In all plumages, the body, legs and bill are black. In flight, has long and rather narrow wings, with a distinctive wedge-shaped tail. Soars occasionally and performs aerobatics.

Call: A variety of very loud and distinctive calls.

Diet: Feeds mostly on insects and their larvae, worms and other subterranean invertebrates, using their curved bills to dig them out of the soil.  They will also eat berries, grain, small mammals and birds and, in true crow fashion, pretty much anything else they can find.

Breeding: Ravens are usually one of the first species to start breeding in the year (February/March). The nest is a large eyrie on a cliff or in the crown of a tree. Traditionally restricted upland areas, Ravens are increasingly reported from lowland and even suburban areas.

Wintering: Largely sedentary within their territories, though some may move to coastal and lowland areas.

Where to See: Widespread in Ireland. Connemara and Wicklow National Parks are good sites to see Ravens in Ireland.

Monitored by: Countryside Bird Survey.

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