Little Ravens

To: <>
Subject: Little Ravens
From: "Philip Veerman" <>
Date: Sat, 18 Jun 2005 21:52:49 +1000
Hi All,
I think like all good generalisations, the one about the raven species and flock sizes is a good one, which means it is correct most (but not all) of the time. So I agree with McComas and Martin. Wasn't it Frith & Co who worked out the difference in the social behaviour and other aspects between these species. It certainly wasn't any past or present coordinator of COG's GBS.
Suffice to say however that this issue has of course already been fully discussed, with quantitative evidence given, from the local context, in the GBS Report (page 82 of the 21 year report, page 83 of the 18 year report), which is so much better than just quoting impressions. In some places (eg around Mugga Lane tip) and times of the year Australian Ravens do occur in congregations, although they are usually in pairs or family groups. There is a difference though between many birds in an area and the same number of birds behaving as a social group (ie showing social cohesion), so keep that in mind when deciding whether it is a flock of birds together. So a flock of 10 or so could easily be this species, it is just on the upper range of flock sizes. However I have never encountered Little Ravens in pairs in the urban or suburban areas in Canberra, only in congregations and on the fringes of the city. John's id may be right but I suggest it as unusual. I would suggest this sighting is worth another try and based on a little more than what John mentions, to be sure of his id. I agree with Martin "I'm not sure if you can see an absence."
Also I never thought of anyone's one year involvement with the GBS, especially during a period when all of the hard work had already been done, could be called a "reign", even though I served COG and developed and contributed to the GBS for about 15 times that long.
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