My son would take the schoolbus home & be let off at the top of the hill near our house. I’d usually end up waiting 5-10 min up there, pacing back & forth until he arrived. One day, I noticed a dead crow in the road. Mindful of West Nile Virus, I walked up to the crow to see if I could tell if it died violently or by illness. However when I got about 4′ away, a murder of crows (how exciting to actually use that in a sentence) flew around me, screaming & dive-bombing my head. I retreated to a safe distance. Each day for 3 days, the body lay there & neither I nor any passersby could get close to it. Then the crow body disappeared after a weekend. However even after the body was gone, if I got too close to where it had lain, they would still squak & scream, mourning, I am convinced, a member of their family.

A Ballard Matron

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