On 07 Jul 2022, I observed from my balcony, a House crow (Corvus splendens) flying to a Footstool palm (Saribus rotundifolius) searching for food. The tree was fruiting but the fruits were still green and therefore not ripe. The fruit will eventually change to bright orange and then turn dark, before ripening to a dark colour and eaten by birds.
Photos 1 and 2 show the crow immersing its head into the big bunch of fruits, diligently seeking for its target.
Photo 3 shows the bird successfully gathering the desired fruit which is dark but smaller than the green fruits that were still developing. The size differences between the green and dark fruits are very obvious in this photo. Could the smaller dark fruit be a fruit that may have stopped growing or even died?
Photo 4 shows the bird gathering a few dark coloured fruits in its beak, in similar fashion to a barbet bird (Megalaimidae). It then flew off.
House crows are highly opportunistic birds and their diet consists of: refuse around human habitations, small reptiles, mammals, insects, other small invertebrates, eggs, nestlings, grain and fruits.
However, this observation made me wonder why a House crow would gather unripe and undeveloped fruits.
Thong Chow Ngian
7 July 2022
All photographs are copyrighted to Thong Chow Ngian.
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