ALASKAN VIEWPOINT: An Insider’s Scoop for Exploring Alaska’s Best!
Ravens are a frequent sight in Alaska.
You can find ravens in almost every area of the state, and at any time of the year. They are one of the only birds to stay through the Alaskan winter.
While “flock” is the most common term used to describe a group of ravens, other names include conspiracy, treachery, or unkindness. However, unless there is a plentiful food supply nearby, you usually see them alone or in pairs.
What is the difference between ravens and crows?
If you’re in Alaska, you’re much more likely to see a raven than a crow. While they are both completely black and members of the corvid family, they have quite a few visible differences. Ravens are bigger, with a noticeably larger bill. Their tails are more diamond or wedge-shaped, while crows have a fan-shaped tail.
Their flight patterns differ as well, with ravens being the more acrobatic of the two. Ravens can somersault or fly upside down, and spend more time soaring than crows.
They are fascinating and intelligent birds.
They often work in teams where one causes a distraction, while the other steals the food or eggs of the preoccupied animal they targeted. A raven is also able to plan ahead and save items for future use.
A captive raven’s ability to talk rivals some parrot species. They can mimic the sounds of machines and other animals. Ravens can imitate a fox or wolf in order to attract these animals to a carcass they can’t break open on their own. They can then feast on the leftovers the larger animal leaves behind.
Alaska Natives consider the raven a trickster.
While European cultures often view ravens as an evil symbol, many Alaska Native groups revere the bird as a figure who was involved in the creation of the world and helpful to humans. In these tales, the Raven is able to assume many forms, shifting between bird, man, and spirit, and known for his mischievous nature.
Often portrayed as a trickster, there are stories detailing his part in many deeds such as providing the earth with game animals, fire, shelter, clothing, mosquitoes, and light. A well known legend tells of Raven using deceit and cunning to steal the sun and release it into the sky so it could be enjoyed by all creatures.
Learn about Alaskan wildlife and more on one of our small group tours.
Our guides frequently share facts and trivia like the information above. Ravens are one of our most common wildlife sightings, but there is so much more to explore. We look forward to amazing you with more local knowledge. Check out our 2021 tour schedule and book your seats now! 2021 Alaskan Tour Guide Land Packages