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Bird Sightings : Hebrides : Hooded Crow

Hebrides Bird Sightings : Hooded Crow

Hooded Crow

(Hoodie, Hoodiecrow, Militia Crow, Scotch Crow, Danish Crow, Denmarks, Norway Crow, Dun Crow, Grey-backed Crow, Winter Crow, Grey Crow, Corby, Corbie, Royston Crow, (Some of these are for the hooded or the carrion crow) Gaelic: Feannag, Starrag)

Corvus Corone

Gaelic: Feannag, Starrag

Photograph © Debbie Bozkurt
North Uist - Outer Hebrides (Western Isles)
7th February, 2006


Our Hooded Crow photographs

Hooded Crow
Hooded Crow
Hooded Crow
Hooded Crows
Hooded Crow
Hooded Crow
Hooded Crow
playing ball!


  • Hooded Crow
  • Corvus cornix
  • UK: summer 214,000 pairs BTO
  • UK: Resident Breeder, Winter Visitor
  • Western Isles: Fairly common (100-999 breeding pairs) resident breeder
  • Breeding: Mostly bulky stick nests in tall trees, also cliff ledges (then uses seaweed in nest), buildings, pylons. Preferred breeding habitat: boggy areas (North & West) Scotland, Europe, Asia
    Diet: Omnivorous: Insects, grain, eggs (inc from puffin burrows), carrion, scraps (drops shellfish to break open)
  • Black glossy head, throat, wings, tail & thighs. Otherwise contrasting ash-grey. Bill & legs black. Male largest otherwise sexes similar. Flight: slow, heavy, straight. Fledglings much blacker than parents. Juveniles duller plumage
  • Listen to a Hooded Crow (RSPB site)


The Hooded crow is very similar in structure and habit, and closely related to the Carrion Crow. Sometimes they interbreed, the hybrids showing mixed grey and black plumage.

Until recently Hooded Crows were considered a geographical variation of Carrion Crows, in 2002 it was decided to separate the species because they do not interbreed frequently, and the hybrids (although fertile) lack vigour.


Hooded crows are one of the more sociable crow species and may often be seen in groups feeding together.


In the back issues of RSPB Birds magazine there is a series of articles about crow antics. Someone wrote about how they had seen a carrion crow pick up a piece of slate in it's beak, put it on the centre of their perspex skylight dome, jump on it and slide down SEVERAL TIMES. Andy sent in a series of photographs of a Hooded Crow playing with a ball.


Hooded Crow records in the Western Isles

Fairly common (100-999 breeding pairs) resident breeder
Source: Outer Hebrides Bird Report (2001)

On the chart below the darker the shade of blue the more abundant the Hooded Crow is during a month or the more likely you are to see it.

























(Source: Outer Hebrides Birds Checklist)



Other local bird photographs

Sources of information for the bird sightings section

Debbie's online photo album

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