What Do Crows Eat?

Perhaps you’re wondering what crows eat? You might not have figured out the answer yet. Crows are blackbirds known for their intelligence and adaptability, as well as their loud, harsh “caw.” They are also known for causing crop damage. However, if you decide to feed these birds, crows may reduce their impact.

Crows eat a wide variety of foods, including seeds, nuts, grains, fruits, berries, vegetables, small mammals, and dead fish. They are known to eat insects, garbage, kitchen scraps, carrion, and roadkill; that’s more than 35 percent of their diet. They also steal eggs from the nests of chickens, ducks, and other birds.

The crow’s diet is one of the fascinating things about these animals. This article further discusses the crow’s common food and how these birds are deemed scavenger birds. 

Crows’ Common Diet

Crows consume a diverse range of foods. There may be nothing that crows do not eat. Let’s look at some of the best crow foods they enjoy eating.

Seeds

Crows can consume a variety of seeds, including black oil sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds. When meat scraps and kitchen leftovers are unavailable, they are willing to consume these seeds. Scatter these seeds throughout your yard to feed them.

Nuts

Crows eat various nuts, including peanuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, pecans, and others. You can also offer shelled or unshelled peanuts to them. They do, however, consume peanuts without the addition of salt or sugar.

Fruits

Most likely, crows consume fruits such as apples, bananas, oranges, grapes, raisins, and so on. They also eat various wild fruits, such as dogwood, wild grapes, wild cherries, poison oak, figs, etc. On the other hand, fruits do not appeal to them in the same way that other foods do.

Berries

Berries, like fruits, are a staple treat for crows. Crows like eating wild berries, such as pokeberries, juniper berries, cranberries, blueberries, and bayberries. They eat berries, in particular when their traditional food sources are scarce.

Vegetables

Crows eat vegetables in addition to fruits and berries. Pumpkin, beans, peas, peppers, potatoes, and various other kitchen vegetables. However, if your crows have grown accustomed to eating meat daily, in that case, it may not be easy to transition them to vegetables.

Grains

They also eat a variety of grains, including corn, rice, wheat, barley, millet, oats, buckwheat, sorghums, and others. When they can’t find any dead or small mammals, these blackbirds rely on grains.

Eggs

Crows, unlike other birds, enjoy eating chicken and duck eggs. When the chickens and ducks are not present, they observe and steal eggs from their nests. Put some small-sized eggs in your yard if you want to feed crows with chicken or duck eggs.

Insects

Crows eat various insects, including crickets, grasshoppers, beetles, locusts, snails, spiders, mealworms, earthworms, caterpillars, grubs, and many others. These blackbirds help to maintain the stability of our ecosystem by eating insects.

Junk Food

Crows eat a variety of junk food, including pasta, popcorn, chips, crackers, scallops, and so on. In an emergency, you can also give crows some cookies. These blackbirds, on the other hand, dislike salty junk food. As a result, make sure to give them unsalted ones.

Meat & Fat

Crows are omnivorous scavengers, as you may already know. These blackbirds primarily eat discarded meat and fat, particularly from chickens and ducks. You can also provide them with raw suet from butcher shops in your area.

Cat/Dog Food

Many people are unaware that crows can consume cat or dog food. Please note that if you feed them a dry or wet cat or dog food, make sure to soak the food in water first. This is due to the risk of choking on dry cat/dog food.

Marine Food

Crows will eat a variety of foraged marine treats such as clams, sea urchins, crustaceans, and so on. They eat dead trout as well. These black-feathered birds frequently steal fish from eagles and ospreys.

Man-Made Food

Surprisingly, crows consume a variety of artificial foods, including bread. If you feed bread to crows, make sure to soak it in water first so they can easily consume it. You can also keep a bowl of water nearby so that the crows can soak the bread themselves.

Underground Food

Crows are adept at locating food underground. They may come across both live and dead foods. They can usually find worms, buried seeds, and kitchen leftovers while foraging in the soil.

Small Mammals

Crows are not known to prey on adult birds or mammals. On the other hand, crows forage for smaller animals such as frogs, salamanders, young birds, reptiles, lizards, small snakes, mice, opossums, shrews, and skunks.

Dead Animals

Crows, while not as omnivorous as hawks and owls, primarily feed on roadkill and dead animals. They help keep our environment clean by consuming dead or dying mice, lizards, reptiles, frogs, salamanders, and even young birds.

Water

Like many other animals, crows require a lot of water to drink while eating, especially on hot days. You may have noticed a crow drinking from a shallow birdbath. If you want crows to visit your yard, provide them with fresh drinking water.

Should you Feed Crows?

If you start feeding the crows, don’t be surprised if they return with a few friends. When you feed them regularly, they will see you as a convenient food source and will return. Some people believe that feeding birds, particularly crows, attracts mice and rats.

Because crows will eat mice and rats, this isn’t a cause for concern, especially if you keep the area around their feeding station clean.

Crows’ Diet in Review

Now that you know what crows eat, you can feed these black-feathered birds in your backyard by filling various types of feeders or scattering seeds, grains, and nuts on the ground.

Now, the question should not only be, “What do crows eat?” but also, “What responsibilities do you have in feeding them?” Crows can be beneficial, but if you don’t address the issues they may cause, they can be a source of many problems. Moreover, feeding them requires you to be consistent and responsible as always.

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