Growth in Common Raven Populations
Common Ravens, the much larger cousin of crows, have been increasing in numbers all across the western US over the past several decades. Known as an anthropologically subsidized species (they take advantage of human activities and food), ravens are changing from a species that once was the symbol of the wild to one that is associated with towns and people. While ravens are more closely engrained in human mythology and cultures than any other species, there are still many aspects of their ecology that remain a mystery. To help fill in those knowledge gaps, Craighead Beringia South initiated a long-term study of the ecology of the Common Raven in Jackson Hole in 2002. The primary effort during the first five years is to document nesting density, fledgling survival, movements, and the influence of humans on demographics of the ravens. While both scavengers and predators, we have been investigating the potential effects ravens have on sensitive prey species such as Greater Sage-Grouse.
Recently, behavioral PhD candidate Rhea Esposito has begun her field investigations on the competition and cooperation in ravens, crows and magpies of Jackson Hole. Her research is investigating how these three related species interact during the breeding season and how adept they are at problem solving in the wild. Craighead Beringia South is helping Rhea with her project for the next several years.
The Raven Project investigators include Derek Craighead, Bryan Bedrosian, and Trapper Haynam of Craighead Beringia South.
The Raven Project works closely and in accordance with a variety of cooperators, collaborators, and permitting agencies and organizations, including Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Wyoming State Veterinary Lab, and Arkansas State University, Biology Department.
Bedrosian, B. 2005. Nesting and post-fledging ecology of the Common Raven in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming. MS Thesis, Arkansas State University. PDF
Bedrosian, B and D. Craighead 2010. Anthropogenic influences on Common Ravens in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Poster Presentation. PDF
Bedrosian, B. E. and D. Craighead. 2007. Evaluation of transmitter attachment techniques for large-altricial fledglings. Northwest Naturalist. 88:1-6. PDF
Bedrosian, B. and D. Craighead. 2007. Band wear in Common Ravens (Corvus corax). North American Bird Bander. 32:149-152. PDF
Bedrosian, B., J. Loutsch, and D. Craighead. 2008. Using morphometrics to determine the sex of Common Ravens. Northwest Naturalist. 89:46-52. PDF
Bui, T-V, J.M. Marzluff and B. Bedrosian. 2010. Common Raven activity
in relation to land use in wetern Wyoming: Implications for Greater
Sage-Grouse reproductive success. Condor. 112:65-78. PDF
The Raven Project is funded by grants and donations from organizations and individuals interested in the proper management, conservation, and stewardship of our natural resources, including wildlife. All donations are tax-deductible and Craighead Beringia South is a registered non-profit.