Somehow it has been two weeks since I reported on our little corvid ecosystem. I have no idea how that happened. Short update: everyone is fine, although the crows would like you to know there have been some close calls.
Crows are creatures of habit. I suppose that sticking to routine enhances chances of survival – if you don’t go around experimenting, you won’t get into trouble. At any rate, our crew is accustomed to getting super worms for breakfast and then a joint of a chicken wing at 10:00 a.m. If we forget the chicken wing, the dulcet tones of cawing crows remind us of our duty. I don’t know how they know it’s 10. They never demand chicken any earlier but don’t allow for tardiness either.
Last Saturday I blasted up to Boston, prevailing upon Super Hub to drive me to the airport for a 8 am flight. It was still dark when we left, so we snuck out of the house so as not to rouse the birds. We managed to get out without detection, but SH was busted upon return because breakfast had not been served.
Then chaos ensued because SH got confused and grabbed chicken instead of worms. As he explained later:
I dump G&S’s wings on the “Altar of Offering” and go to hand Bubba [aka Ruckus] her part of the wing. I hold it up to the wire, just like usual, …and she looks at the wing….and she looks at me….and then she looks at the wing…and back at me…and I realize, “Crap, it’s morning, which is WORM TIME, not wing time.”
Rush back inside, get the worms together. Back out to the enclosure, where G&S are just….staring at the wings on the table in askance. Gather up the chicken, distribute the worms. Back to inside Bubba’s room. She hops onto my arm and looks at me in what can only be described as crowly contempt. Snatches up a worm in a rather surly manner and looks at me again, worming squirming in her beak, making sure I get a good look at my failure. Finishes her worms, saving two for later. Hops up on to a perch, back to me, pointedly.
I suppose I might react the same way if someone tried to feed me beef stew for breakfast, but I find it hilarious that all three birds actually refused to eat the chicken because it was served at the wrong time.