American Crow

Scientific Name
Corvus brachyrhynchos
Also Known As
Common Crow
All of Florida
Invertebrates, Carrion, Nuts, Eggs
Life Expectancy
10 - 15 Years
The American Crow

Photo 250469703 © Bert Filemyr, CC BY-NC

American Crow conservation status - Least Concern

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American Crows in Central Florida

The American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) is a ubiquitous bird found throughout central Florida. Often considered a nuisance, American Crows are highly intelligent and exhibit fascinating behaviors when studied closely. This comprehensive guide provides identification tips, biology facts, and prevention methods for managing American Crow populations in central Florida.

Read on to learn about American Crow identification, habits, reproduction, ideal habitat, food sources, health risks, and professional control options if encountering issues with American Crows on your property.

Appearance and Identification

American Crows can be identified in both juvenile and adult plumage by their physical characteristics

Adult American Crow

Photo 62881585 © Nils Helstrom, CC BY-NC

Adult American Crows

  • Size: Adults are 17-21 inches (43-53 cm) long with a wingspan around 3 feet (0.9 m). They weigh 11-21 oz (312-595 g).
  • Plumage: Adults have glossy, all-black plumage over their entire body, including feathers, legs, and bill.
  • Beak: The stout, black bill curves slightly downwards.
  • Eyes: Dark brown irises in adults compared to blue-gray in juveniles.
  • Vocalizations: The characteristic deep, hoarse “caw” call. Other rattles, coos, and clicks.
A Juvenile American Crow

Photo 116840191 © 2ndmowae Lazaga, CC BY-NC

Juvenile American Crows

  • Size: Newly hatched American Crows are about 3 inches (7.6 cm) long and weigh around 2.5 ounces (71 grams). They reach full adult size by about 4-5 weeks old.
  • Plumage: Juvenile feathers appear fluffy and gray. The eyes are blue-gray.
  • Beak: The short, straight beak is pink at first, darkening as they grow.
  • Vocalizations: Young American Crows make louder, higher-pitched “caw-caw” sounds.
American Crow Eggs

Photo 186596612 © Dana Hoisington, CC BY-NC

American Crow Eggs

  • Size: American Crow eggs are 1.1-1.9 inches (28-48 mm) in length and 0.8-1.2 inches (21-30 mm) in width.
  • Shape: The eggs are a rounded oval shape with one end slightly more pointed than the other.
  • Color: The background color ranges from pale bluish-green to light greenish-blue, dotted with brown spots, blotches, or scrawls. The markings vary in intensity but often concentrate around the wider end.
  • Shell: The shell has a fine grainy texture and slight gloss. It is usually described as “chalky”.
  • Clutch: American Crows typically lay 3-7 eggs per clutch. The eggs are laid over 1-2 days, with incubation starting after the laying of the penultimate egg.
  • Nest: The eggs are incubated for about 18 days in a nest of sticks, twigs, and bark, lined with soft materials like grass, moss, feathers, or paper.

Maturation Rate

American Crow chicks develop rapidly, reaching adult size in about a month after hatching. They depend on parental care for up to 5 months as they learn essential skills like identifying food, avoiding predators, tool use, and social behaviors. Juvenile American Crows stay with their family group through the winter after fledging.