Way, way off topic: Counting Crows
No, not music.
This weekend I was out working and a crow that lives out back of our barn drifted in to roost for a while. He has been living there for several years and is not your average crow. He talks to himself, constantly. He doesn't sound like an ordinary crow either. He rattles off all sorts of weird sounds that I have never heard from other crows, then he seems to burst out in laughter. It's not just me either, my wife heard him doing this yesterday too and that is what she thought it sounded like. It's like he is practising a stand up comedy monologue or something. I have always had the impression he is somehow much smarter than other crows.
Yesterday I tried calling to him. I do this on occasion with crows and they generally totally ignore me. But not this time. I cawed, he cawed back. We exchanged single caws several times and it became obvious he was replying to me. Then he cawed twice so I cawed back twice. After a brief silence he cawed three times so I answered back three times. Then he cawed 4 times so I answered with 4 caws. A little longer silence then he cawed six times so I answered six times. I thought to myself that he missed number five.
Then he cawed 3 times and before I could answer he added two more. 3+2=5? At that point something else got his attention and he took off as I went back to work splitting wood. My wife heard all of this too so it isn't my imagination.
I have no idea what to think of this except it is highly out of the ordinary as far as I know. Has anybody ever experienced anything like in respect of a wild animal, in particular a crow? I mentioned it to a friend and he pointed out that there must be a range of mental capabilities in animals just as there is in humans. So, it this crow an Einstein of the crow world? It has occured to me that perhaps he was testing to see if I know how to count and that I should have replied with 5 caws to his six...
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