But, I digress from my story . . .
I lived on a beautiful 90 acre horse farm in Churchville, Pennsylvania for 19 years. My apartment overlooked the horse pastures, and it was a wonderful view to observe all types of nature –deer, foxes, skunks, farm cats, and, of course, the horses. There were many sparrow hawks that would alight on the fence posts and hunt for mice. The pasture sloped down to a turn-out shed and then made a sharp right hand turn to run back towards the Churchville reservoir which bordered the farm and is where I now walk my dogs.
One winter day after we’d had snow, I was standing at my kitchen window looking out over the pastures and distant woods. I noticed two crows on the ground in the pasture and started to watch them. They have such an amusing, cocky strut-walk. They were going down on their bellies and sliding and fluffing in the snow. Suddenly I became aware that there was something very ritualistic about what the crows were doing.
One crow would flop down on its belly, push off with its feet, and slide down the slope. When it lost momentum and stopped, he would stand up and walk back up the slope to the starting point and repeat the ritual. The second crow joined in and started to do the same thing. And so I stood there at my kitchen window, just mesmerized by these two crows having a blast in the snow playing their “slide down the slope” game — flop down on belly, push off with feet, wheeeeeee sliiiiiiide, and then walking back up the slope (mind you, walking, not flying) to repeat the game.
It just changed my whole perspective of crows, their intelligence, sense of fun, and yes, sense of humor. As an observer, I could only begin to imagine the communication occuring between the two crows as they enjoyed the snow. A magical experience and totally endeared the crow to me. I feel such an affinity with and for this brash and very smart corvid.