Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Become a sustaining member and you could win a trip to Barbados!

Ravens Are Playful And Smart

Flickr Creative Commons


Among the many stories about the intelligence of ravens, and their playfulness is one from Mount Monadnock. As the sun was setting a hiker shared the mountaintop with a gang of ravens taking turns leaping  into a strong updraft, tumbling up, then circling around to leap again.

As one point a raven flew by with a white cracker in its bill, prompting a game of chase. The raven wasn't eating the cracker he war flaunting it. The game appeared to be the goal. The park manager confirmed that the ravens were regulars, “eating, playing, guffawing” he said, as the day’s hikers head for home. 

Credit toddovich / Flickr/Creative Commons
Flickr/Creative Commons

Another report comes from winter hikers exploring conservation land in the town of Stoddard. In the sky high above, a group of ravens performed graceful aerobatic dives and rolls for hours as the earthbound hiker trudged along by snowshoe below. Near a stream, tracks in the snow indicated a raven drinking and bathing spot (ravens bathe a lot). Other imprints in the snow looked like the ravens had made snow angels. One or more had slid down the spine of a stone wall on the steep stream bank. What looked like a toboggan run told the story.

See a group of ravens, and most likely they’re juveniles. Not yet paired up. The youngsters cause amusement as they cross paths with human observers. 

Chris Martin has worked for New Hampshire Audubon for over 31 years as a Conservation Biologist, specializing in birds of prey such as Bald Eagles, Ospreys, and Peregrine Falcons.
Related Content

You make NHPR possible.

NHPR is nonprofit and independent. We rely on readers like you to support the local, national, and international coverage on this website. Your support makes this news available to everyone.

Give today. A monthly donation of $5 makes a real difference.