I can't remember when I first decided that crows, ravens, jays and magpies were my kind of birds. It may have begun when the Baca County Extension agent would stop by our ranch for coffee and show us a wounded crow or magpie that he had found. He soon learned that I would volunteer to feed and water them until their wing or leg was healed. He would retrieve them on his next trip and release them into the wild again. Their shrill raspy caw and their in-your-face attitude expressed everything I thought I could never be. I was shy and withdrawn as a child and wanted very much to be brave and outspoken like the corvid patients in my care.
I have snapped hundreds of photos of these birds only to have them move or fly to ruin my shot. So I have resorted to the next best thing: I collect books, art and crafts which celebrate my corvid heroes. My friends often give me corvid gifts. My husband gave me a sculptured metal crow for Christmas one year. My favorite book about the corvids is Bird Brains, an appropriate title as they are considered to be exceptionally intelligent birds--and the book contains wonderful photos as well as fascinating information.