Friday, March 13, 2015


Ravens are definitely all around but still not a frequent visitor to my small yard.  I cannot blame them.  There is so much lovely open space across the street in the vineyards.  But they do come now and then to pick up an egg.  Unfortunately I am never looking at the platform feeder when they arrive, boo hoo.  Not to worry I have had many fun raven viewings in the last few months!

Bodega Bay- I am happy to report on our recent visit to the Bodega Bay Headlands... the distressed raven who lost their mate has found a new one.  We parked our vehicle up on the headlands and here came the raven pair.  They perched right  in front of us.  I had saved some sour dough bread from the Tides Restaurant and threw it out for the ravens.  They liked that.  I had to be sneaky about it to avoid alerting the seagulls.  It was wonderful to see the raven pair flying and diving and rolling in the sky.

Twin Peaks in San Francisco- We were down in San Francisco at the San Francisco Historical Society show at the Old Mint.  I had never been in the Old Mint building before, very interesting and lots of great displays. Emperor Norton was wandering the halls, calling out to all his subjects and  contra dancing was being taught in a large room, but I digress. After our visit to the Mint, our friend George drove us up to Twin Peaks for the view.  It was a beautiful clear day and San Francisco lay
sparkling at our feet.  But hark- what is that up on the Twin Peaks tower??  Why it is a lovely pair of ravens!  They were patrolling the area, flying from tower to tower.  But hark- what was that?? A large hawk had the audacity to land on one of the towers! The raven pair fly over and sat on either side of the hawk.  It was a stare down.  The hawk finally gave up and flew away.  I had observed this behavior many times up on Mt. Veeder.  The ravens do not try to attack the hawk- they just sit and look at it until it becomes so uncomfortable that it flies away.  Could humans use this strategy??

I have seen many ravens pairs around the town of Napa. It is so frustrating, why don't they come to my yard where they would be treated so well??  I know it is the size of the yard and the closed in nature of a small suburban garden that they do not favor, but POOR ME- I am bereft!!  I was in a Mexican restaurant and there was a pair of ravens in a small tree right in front of me!!!  Then yesterday and this beats all... I was at an ARCO gas station waiting to pick up my friend who needed a ride home.  A sassy crow landed right in front of me in a redwood tree.  He wanted something to eat of course.  I had a granola bar in the glovebox.  I got it out and broke it up and threw it out on the ground.  The crow flew to the top of telephone pole to check it out.  Ha- he who waits... loses.  A raven threw down to the ground and started stuffing as many pieces of granola bar into his beak as possible.  Wow- now that was something!

Update on Bold and Shy on Mt. Veeder.  The raven pair are alive and well and flying all around their territory.  Peggy over near Lokoya Lodge told me this week that they are hanging around there.  Last week I took a bag of frozen chicken fat up to my former next door neighbor on Mt. Veeder.   No it
wasn't for my neighbor to eat, but an offering for Bold and Shy.  Russ told me that the ravens loved it! I knew they would.  It was one of their preferred foods when I did my raven food preference tests.  Dead little mousies come in right there with chicken fat.  Oh and dead rattle snake was a favorite too!

I was recently in Ireland for a week with my daughter.  I was looking for birds as we traveled around.  I saw many birds that were new to me but not one raven.  I thought for sure we would see one as we rode through the open countryside.  I really wanted to see an Irish raven, but no luck!

I think it is time to go put an egg out into the platform feeder and some peanuts too.  Hope springs eternal... perhaps it is my day to see a raven in my garden!!!