Wesley Hills, NY, United States
Ever since a neighbor cut down some trees and spread the wood chips around in the woods behind my house, I’ve seen crows congregate there. Sometimes it seemed they were there to enjoy the water that accumulated there. Then I noticed that they liked the wood chips too. Even ate one. I don’t get it. Crows eat wood chips? Big chunks? Is this how they get their fiber? 🙂
Hi John, I showed your video to our resident crow expert Kevin McGowan. He interprets the video (7/13/14) as a crow retrieving a cached food item that it previously had stored in the wood chips. Although it looks like it’s eating wood, if you watch carefully, you can see it pushing wood chips aside and pulling up something (bread?) that it had buried there. Food caching (hiding food items to eat at a later time) is a common behavior of crows. They are not known to eat wood, but a pile of wood chips does seem like a convenient place to hide something quickly.
Crows are very intelligent creatures, and it’s fun to watch them take advantage of new situations in their environment. I’m sure there are many little bugs crawling around in those wood chips, too.
Ravens seem to have eaten chunks off the eaves of my house these past few weeks. I have not seen them actually do it but they are often on my window ledge and there are no other birds/animals around. It’s quite disturbing. There’s a piece about 2 inches cube missing in each redwood – or is it cedar? – beam. So sorry I can’t handle digital photo upload. Any thoughts/advice? This damage is done on my balcony about 1/4 mile from Pacific Ocean…
Hi Elsa, I’ve not heard of Ravens doing this, and I checked our Birds of the World resource which also doesn’t seem to mention this as a behavior of ravens, but I can say that in terms of birds, woodpeckers are often the culprit for damaging the wooden siding/eaves of homes. There is a great article on this here that I recommend checking out. Other possibilities are mammals, that may pass through in the night or while you are away form home.