[order] Passeriformes | [family] Corvidae | [latin] Corvus splendens | [UK] House Crow | [FR] Corbeau familier | [DE] Glanzkrähe | [ES] Cuervo Casero | [IT] Cornacchia grigia indiana | [NL] Huiskraai

Huiskraai determination

copyright: J. del Hoyo

Quite large attenuated crow, lacking bulk of common large European black crows and having distinctive bill and head profile. Plumage suggests hybrid between black and hooded forms of C. corone. Black on front of head and throat, abruptly grey on nape, neck, and chest, slate on underbody, and black on back, wings, and tail. Sexes similar, no seasonal variation.

Original range lies in Indian subcontinent, in subtropical and tropical lowlands, also in hills up to somewhat more than 2000 m, but does not ascend from Indus valley to highland Baluchistan within that limit, and has established only precarious foothold in Vale of Kashmir. Presence of some trees probably essential, roosts communally in mangroves, banyans, coconuts, and in tree plantations, often reached by long high-level flights. Has become intricately enmeshed with human activities in urban and even metropolitan areas.

In west Palearctic, confined to a few ports and other areas along major shipping routes, where occurrence due to deliberate introductions by man and self-introductions by ship transportation.

Very dependent on man's rubbish, scraps, offal, and sewage, otherwise any edible invertebrates, small vertebrates, plant material, or carrion. Feeds mostly on ground, but also in trees and on buildings. Forages mainly at rubbish tips, abattoirs, markets, farms, beaches near fisheries or tourist resorts, etc., travelling up to 15 km from rosst to feeding place.

This species has a large range, with an estimated global Extent of Occurrence of 1,000,000-10,000,000 km². The global population size has not been quantified, but it is believed to be large as the species is described as 'abundant' in at least parts of its range (Madge and Burn 1993). Global population trends have not been quantified, but the species is not believed to approach the thresholds for the population decline criterion of the IUCN Red List (i.e. declining more than 30% in ten years or three generations). For these reasons, the species is evaluated as Least Concern. [conservation status from birdlife.org]

Breeds from may to start of august. Nest site, always close to human habitation, in fork near top of tall tree or in outermost branches, often in banyan or mango. in Israel in groves of tamarisk. The nest is a untidy mass of twigs, often thorny, sticks plastic, string, assorted pieces of metal, electrical cable, etc. Depression in center lined with fibres of wood or bark, grass, hair, cloth, and similar soft material, though can be unlined. Clutch size 3-5 eggs, very variable in shape, size, and color. Incubation lasts 15-17 days, by both sexes.

Resident in the whole of breeding range