Have you ever wondered what the predators of crows are? These birds may seem invulnerable sometimes, and they are fierce predators themselves, but there are actually plenty of animals that will attack and eat crows, both the babies and the adults. So, what are all crows predators?
Crows are eaten by raptors, mammals, and reptiles, and some of their common predators include falcons, great horned owls, cats, squirrels, foxes, raccoons, ravens, snakes, dogs, and eagles. Some of these will only steal eggs or chicks, while others will tackle fully grown crows.
What Mammals Eat Crows?
There are many different mammals that will prey on crows. For example, cats and dogs will both do so if they are given the opportunity.
Domestic animals can be surprisingly damaging to birds, and both cats and dogs will chase crows with great excitement.
In general, cats and dogs will not manage to catch crows.
Crows are very agile, clever birds, and they do not tend to hang around long enough for either a cat or a dog to get hold of them. However, in some instances, a lucky cat or a slow crow will result in a catch.
If it comes to a fight, you should separate the animals, because crows are strong and will do a lot of damage if desperate.
Many other mammals will also target crows, and those that can climb well may be more effective predators. For example, raccoons and opossums are both commonly found in trees, and they will be able to raid the nests of crows, or attack young crows or even adults when they roost in the branches.
If you find crow feathers in your yard, it is likely because a bird has been attacked while nesting.
These mammals are rarely fast enough to catch a crow on the ground, but in the trees, they may manage to sneak up and grab one. They will eat any crow that they are large enough to tackle.
Squirrels do not attack adult crows as they aren’t big enough, but you might be surprised to learn that they will steal the eggs and babies.
In general, they don’t do this, because squirrels are mostly vegetarian, and don’t tend to feed on birds or their young.
However, when times are hard, they have been known to steal the eggs and baby birds from nests, and there is no reason that they won’t pick a crow’s nest if this happens.
Of course, crows are also known for eating squirrels, so this goes both ways! Do they attack other crows too?
Foxes cannot climb trees, but they will certainly snatch crows if they get the opportunity, and they are large enough to easily tackle adult birds.
If you have foxes near your home, don’t be surprised if crows seem wary when they are on the ground; they are likely aware of these potential predators, and may take flight at the slightest provocation.
Those are the main mammals that prey on crows, and of them all, foxes, raccoons, and opossums probably represent the biggest threats to adult crows.
Squirrels, on the whole, are not common crow predators.
What Birds Eat Crows?
Of course, many other birds prey on crows, despite the fact that they are quite large birds themselves. In general, the adults will only be hunted by bigger birds, but eggs and young can be eaten by surprisingly small birds.
The main bird predators of crows are the raptors, which is logical, as these are large birds that specialize in hunting other in-flight creatures. They are a highly successful group of hunters, and crows are at risk from quite a lot of them.
For example, in the day, crows need to watch out for hawks, falcons, and eagles. These are all large enough birds to take on a crow, and they will dive down from above to snatch the crow out of the air.
However, crows do sometimes seem to attack these birds, although they do not eat them. If a large group of crows comes across a falcon or hawk that is roosting, they will mob it, forcing it to fly away.
This may be to discourage the bird from hanging around in the crow territory, reducing the risk of future attacks, or it may have some other purpose.
At night, crows are still not safe from predators. Although they are daytime birds and settle down to roost at night, this leaves them vulnerable to owls.
The great horned owl is known for eating crows, and it will lunge at them from the darkness while they are roosting.
You might be surprised to learn that crows are sometimes attacked by birds other than raptors. Grackles, for example, will take on baby crows and steal eggs, although they are not big enough to attack adult crows.
Similarly, other birds will raid nests, such as ravens, blue jays, and kingbirds. They are also too small to take on adult crows, but can damage their numbers by killing their young.
Crows will usually respond in kind, stealing the eggs of and sometimes attacking these bird species.
What Other Animals Eat Crows?
There are a few other animals that eat crows. Some climbing snakes, for example, will attack eggs, chicks, and adults if they are roosting, and these are a big threat to crows.
If you live in an area with snakes, you may find that crows get attacked by them on a regular basis. Garter snakes are a particularly common predator.
A few other opportunists may attack crows, but those are their main predators.
Conclusion: What Are The Predators Of Crows?
Crows have a surprising number of varied predators, and they can be attacked on the ground, in trees, and on the wing. Many crows have their nests plundered, and lose both eggs and young to hawks and other predatory bird species.
If you are worried about the crow presence in your garden, try not to be.
Although crows do eat smaller songbirds, they rarely have enough impact to noticeably change the diversity in an area, and some studies suggest that they can actually be helpful in certain circumstances.