Corvus monedulaThe British Isles are rich with members of the Corvidae. The Jackdaw (Corvus monedula), for one, was a species ever-present on our trip, particularly in towns and villages. One of many dialect names for them is Sea-crow and we rarely strayed far from the coast. They are very fond of using chimneys for their nests (something, one gathers, homeowners are not as fond of).Corvus monedulaCorvus monedulaTheir distinctive chuff-chirp call — M likened it a monkey — went long into the late evening (the sun was setting around 10pm up there in the north). Two large groups of Jackdaws floated above separate patches of nearby woodland, shouting and clamoring, on the windy day we waited for a train to take us back the 59 miles we’d walked, a thrilling, spectacular sight. Corvus monedulaThe silvery gray on the nape, the pale blue eye. “Jackdaw” looks like a combination of “jack,” used for small animals, and the Old English-derived daw. Another old English name for the birds sounds like “chuff,” which is how Chough, an entirely different bird (Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax, also a Corvid) is pronounced.Corvus monedula

2 Responses to “Jackdaws”

  1. 1 Mark Wilkinson July 9, 2015 at 7:47 am

    Love ’em.
    If you haven’t read it, take a dip into King Solomon’s Ring http://s-f-walker.org.uk/pubsebooks/pdfs/Konrad_Lorenz_King_Solomon's_Ring.pdf

    Chapter 11 The Perennial Retainers on his experiences with Jackdaws is extraordinary.

    • 2 mthew July 9, 2015 at 7:57 pm

      Thank you, Mark. I’m look into your reference. Already noting that the book is dedicated to Mr. & Mrs. J.B. Priestly, but further research reveals that this was the 2nd Mrs. J.B. Priestly; I was just reading about the 3rd, Jacquetta Hawkes in Macfarlane’s Landmarks.

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