As I was preparing breakfast for Merlina the crow this morning I stopped to think about how privileged I am to be responsible for such a beautiful wild bird. Merlina the hooded crow can’t look after herself as she has only one wing and a dodgy leg. I have no idea how she got those injuries but anyway, she is with us now in a home-made aviary and seems content enough with her lot.
She has a number of different caws. One is a low sound of between three and five caws if I pass her and say ‘Ciao Merlina.’ Her feathers all stick out and she lowers her head when she does this. There is a caw for when I go out of the gate with the dogs and a different one when we leave in the car. A shrieking cry brings the dogs hurtling over to see what’s up. It’s usually something unfamiliar that causes her to make this alarm call.
To me she is really a magical creature and of course there are many myths and legends associated with crows and ravens. I have written a longer piece about Merlina if you would like to read it here.