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Old Jul 1, 2007, 9:43 AM   #1
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A crow flew down on my utility vehicle and decided to have a smoke.






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Old Jul 1, 2007, 10:51 AM   #2
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Crows and ravens are so intelligent and seem to thrive close to humans. Thanks for posting that. Do you often see that particular bird?
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Old Jul 1, 2007, 11:31 AM   #3
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Nice shots,,They are well known to follow hunters for food and if caught early enough they can be trained to talk, supposed to be among the most intelligent of birds.
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Old Jul 1, 2007, 6:27 PM   #4
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Thanks for posting these, which are more significant than just being funny pictures.As this butt was still lit, there could have been serious consequenses. Just whatdid the crow do with this cigatette, anyway?

Whathas beencaptured here in these graphic photographs is an example of what is known as maladaptive behavior. Many birds use certain types ofants to rid themselves of parasites by rubbing them over their skin and feathers. The formic acid released by the ants is believed to be the agent responsible, but tha acid also generates heat on the birds skin. Some birds - like this one -have learned to pick up and uselit cigarettes the same way, but only because the heat feels the same to them!

To anyone who reads this: please DO NOT TRY THIS yourself by leaving burning cigarettes where birds can find them - you have no idea how many fires have been started by birds dropping burning cigarettes! In rural areas entire barns are known to have been burned down by birds carrying cigaretes into haylofts! (These incidents have beencited in textbooks). We will never know how many "suspicious" brush and forest fires have been ignited in this manner by birds with cigarette butts orembers stolen from incompletely extinguisned campfires, or how many shake or thatched roofs have burned this way.

I once wanted to get pictures of birds "anting" behavior" with cigarettes to show to my classes when we talked about bird behavior -- I was obliged by a friend who was a zoo curator and who had a bird which had developed a propensityto walk up to visitors in the aviaryand grab cigarettes out oftheir handsfor this very purpose. He unfortunately lit a fresh cigarette and gave it to the bird, which began immediately to rub it on its skin, butthe cigarettewas still so long that it got caught beneath some feathers and literally set the bird on fire! He managed to grab the bird in time topull the cigarette outand douse the smouldering feathers before anyserious damage was done, but it was a near thing. And I managed to film the whole episode, which proves the truth of this story. I think it was Gracie Allen in the old time radio shows who used to say "'Taint funny, McGee," so as they say now, "DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME" as there may be unintended consequenses!

I don't mean to hijack this thead, but the opportunity to address this topic was too good to pass up. Very useful pictures indeed - they are the kind that textbook publishers like to use.
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Old Jul 1, 2007, 11:41 PM   #5
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Entertaining photos, and well-captured, rondv.

Penolta, that is certainly an informative PSA you've posted. There just might be someone who would look at these great photos and attempt what you've described. Thanks for the informative post.
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