Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Kalanu, Kahka'kwi, Kangi, and Kotollo-ah

As many of you know I did not start my Alphabe-Thursday participation until the letter "G"...a late bloomer I guess:-) Thusly I missed the letter "C" and an appropriate opportunity to post about one of my favorite groups of birds, The Crows...and Ravens to a lesser extent only because we do not have them in the southeastern US. The title of my post are four of the Native American names for crows and ravens...Cherokee, Cree, Lakota and Zuni respectively. So I sort of snuck in the back door with our Alpahabe-"K":-)

Crows and Ravens are remarkable birds, both from a natural history and cultural perspective. Their level of intelligence ranks among the highest of all birds perhaps only rivaled by the Mynah and a few Parrots. There is no telling how far back the crow/raven/human relationship extends, although cave paintings depicting crows or ravens have been found in France dating back some 30,000 years. There is such an enormous amount of material on these birds...much more than I could even begin to cover here. As many of you would know much of their history as relates to humans is particularly dark and negative. There are obvious natural history reasons for much of this. It is interesting to note that a good bit of the negative started in Europe, and that for the most part this group of wonderful birds are seen as powerful, yet positive "influences" in Native American culture.

The pictures below are some I have taken of crows here around our house. The artwork/sculpture...a clay, hand fashioned crow family (technically called a "murder"), a hand carved crow decoy, and a prized, 160 year old 1st edition Audubon.

There are many good books on crows and ravens that would amaze and amuse anyone. Enjoy:-)

Kathy's Knee Replacement...Her surgery went well and her hospital PT has gone well, although she will never again take an Ambien:-) She is scheduled to come home tomorrow afternoon, and we will venture out for our first PT on Good Friday. Thanks to you guys for your prayers, thoughts and good vibes...Happy Good Friday and Easter to you all. Thank you Jenny...Peace and blessings...Namaste...Shalom Aleichem


  1. Jeff,
    We have a lot of Crow living in our woods surrounding our home. They can be quite loud at times. And they are a lot larger than I thought. When we moved here a couple of years ago I think I had only saw black birds up close. One morning I got up and there were these very large black birds in our yard just walking around. It took me a minute to realize what they were. If you get a chance go to my blog and find the give-away post I have up for my blog anniversary and leave a comment for Mrs C. so I can fairly put her in the drawing that would be great. Since she won the Christmas ornament I think she might be disappointed that she did not get added this time. Give her my best wishes too.

  2. I love crows! Sometimes we get ones so big, just walking around the yard, it looks like they'd be able to carry off our littlest boy, if they wanted. I adore that a flock of crows is called a murder, of course. And crows feature prominently in many Tom Waits songs, and he's one of my favorite musical artists.
    Hope the knee mends well!

  3. Hi Jeff, I was just thinking of you and Kathy.

    I have to wonder how you guys get your posts up so quickly.

    I am always surprised to come back here minutes after posting the links and there are already all these links!

    I loved this post!

    I am going to print it out as part of my summer survival program for Grandma Daycare this year!

    We are going to do little units of science, etc. and since we have many crows around here I think this will be a perfect start!

    Thanks Jeff!

    Fantastic post!

    I'm so happy you joined Alphabe-Thursday...late bloomer or not!


  4. I don't care much for crows. They always remind me of the movie Alfred Hitchcock s The Birds. I think that's one the scariest movies ever. Although just today when we were driving, there was a dead animal in the road and there were a couple of birds that looked like crows feasting on it. I almost thought we were going to run them over because they didn't seem like they were going to move but they did. Good K post

  5. One year crows were all over my yard. Great...they're intelligent birds! Now I know why the fake owl didn't do any good. It's was just that one year. They've never come back, but I don't put out bird see any more. The bird seed attracted rats too.

    You take beautiful photographs. I look forward to seeing your photography each week and I learn something too.

    Glad Kathy is doing well and will be home tomorrow. I'm sure you're going to be an excellent caretaker.

  6. Very interesting post about crows and anyone who can write about crows using the letter K gets extra points in my book. Glad you joined in with Alphabe-Thursday! I am enjoying your posts!

  7. Your photos are truly stunning. I am particularly fond of the 2nd one - beautiful work. Nice choice for K :) So glad to hear that Mrs. C's surgery went well. PT is the key to recovery, even if it's no fun. Hope she continued to do well. Kathy

  8. what a fun post. what a great bird. Have a great day of K's.

  9. Wonderful post. I like crows and since one of my longtime closest friends last name is Blackbird, I'm always looking for black birds. I'll forward this on to her. Hope all is going well with Kathy's progress. Take good care of her!

  10. Jeff I am not sure if our birds could be Ravens or not. Do they sound like crows? Next time they swarm our yard I will try and sneak out without the Bug to get a picture.

  11. Great *KROW* pictures and info!

  12. Kool post and pictures as always! Thank you for keeping us updated on Kathy. Hope all continues to go well, especially with the PT.

  13. Very informative and well-written. And the photographs are simply STUNNING. My favorite, after much deliberation, is the second one. Did you shoot in B&W or just adjust for that effect? It's spectacular.

  14. I really enjoy your posts ... always informative and fun and the photos are wonderful ... personally i think Mrs Matlock should make you do A - I just to catch up with us all! ... I helped my dad through a knee replacement ... work with the physiotherapist and do the exercises religiously ... sending healing meditations to Mrs C!!!

  15. LOVE your bird photos and your "K" post. My laundry room has a bird theme and I really enjoy it.
    I've suffered with knee problems since December and I'm sick of it. I'm still in pain even after a torn meniscus surgery! I think an injectable gel is next for my knee pain.

  16. Crows are corvids! So are bluejays. I just learned that, so I'm sharing it at perhaps the only time I'll ever be able!

    Great Caesar's Ghost! Great Graphics! Love the photos.

    My husband is getting a brand new knee next Thursday, Jeff. The rehab is supposed to be hellish for the first few weeks. I'll keep you both in my prayers.

  17. I loved your Kreative post!! I have to admit that I don't mind the crows too much, but I gained a love of Ravens when we lived in Alaska, they know so much sometimes aren't afraid to let you know it!
    Glad your wife is on the mend!

  18. Sure hope Kathy's knee surgery went well! Knee surgery for me Apr 26. Ugh!

    Fun Krow post!!!

  19. crows are such intelligent creatures...fascinating for sure.

    your comment on ambien...when it first came out the dr's prescribed it for my due to my chronic insomnia. i had horrible hallucinations and amnesia episodes. i complained but they wouldn't listen. years later...many reports of my same experience. I have it on my 'allergic to' list at my new doctor's practice.

  20. Great post and gorgeous photos, Jeff! We have lots of crows around here, and I do enjoy them. Very interesting to learn some new names for these birds, my daughters will enjoy this info. as well.
    Prayers for you both!
    Catherine grace :)

  21. love the crows with the wire feet - so cool :D

  22. Beautiful photography..

    Glad Mrs. C is doing good. I should probably consider knee replacement - mine hurt a lot on occasion..

  23. Love all of your crow photos, we have quite a few around our neighborhood. I watched a group of them chase my favorite female red tail hawk out of a tree the other day, I figured she was too close to one of their nests.

    Good to hear Kathy's knee replacement went well, wishing her a speedy recovery.

  24. Lovely post! You are so thorough and yet you make it all look so easy!
    Clever to sneak crows and ravens in through the "back door" by using the native American names!! Maybe I should have made a post about my cat and used the Swedish word "katt"? Just joking! But I came also very late to this meme and missed all those lovely letters before "D".
    I am amazed that you can blog at all with everything that is going on around you.
    I am so behind in my comments!
    Take care!

  25. Amazing pictures. They almost make me like crows! They always seem lonely too me.

  26. I learned a lot about crows once when I was going to write a poem about them for a poetry contest I was entering. I didn't complete the poem because the deadline was past...but I enjoyed learning about these birds and their intelligence. I have loved ravens ever since my first trip to England and the Tower of London. The story is that, if the ravens ever leave the Tower, the monarchy will crumble, or something to that effect. Of course, their wings are clipped, I believe, so no such disaster will befall the U. K. There is even a keeper of the ravens. I usually go to see them every time I visit London.

  27. ambian is MY friend
    crows are NOT my friend
    jeff is MT friend
    insomnia is not MT friend.

  28. I usually associate ravens and crows with Poe, but I think I need to expand my knowledge of them!

  29. The crows here are all busy with nest building. Soon there will be articles in the local paper about unwary pedestrians being dive-bombed by irate and protective nesting crows. I love the distinctive hollow sound the ravens make, high in the cedars. It's a sound like you'd make by hitting a hollow stick of bamboo - love it.

  30. We get crows in our back garden sometimes. And they stamp about on the roof and wake me up this time of year! I like all corvids. Here in UK we have rooks, magpies, crows, ravens, jays, hooded crows and jackdaws. Lovely photos.

  31. Lucky for us "sneaking" is allowed on Alphabee-Thursday! :-)
    The Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest have lots of stories about Raven. And I enjoyed very much the children's book that came out a few years back called Crow and Weasel. And I really like your Audubon print! (Wasn't he an amazing person?)
    There are so many surgeries that can be done through tiny little incisions these days. But I guess knee surgery is not one of them. Poor Kathy, I feel so bad for her!

  32. What a Kool Kollection of Krows! ...great photos! I am also a late bloomer too...and seem to always be sooo late with my "assignments". But thankfully, sweet Jenny has let me squeeze in to join in the fun.

    Last week, I was out of town for a bit, so totally missed most of the amazing "J" posts!....trying now to see all the fun "K" posts this week, before it's time for "L"!

    Blessings & Aloha!
    (hope you can stop by! and so good to hear Kathy's surgery went well...and hope that her knee gets better and better each day.)

  33. I love crows, always have...Actually I am a bird nut...As a kid, I had a pet crow named Joey that we rescued after he fell out of a nest and mama wouldnt take him back...he used to fly along side my school bus and then peck on my classroom window trying to get my attention...the teacher hated him, he was a riot...He always made the "baby noise" at me...obnoxiously loud.....I had him for seven years and later had parrots....he was the smartest guy of them all....