A month or more has passed since the battle between human and raven ratcheted up a notch. The dogs’ barked non-stop, the ravens cawed loudly and little birds panicked. I stop working on my edit, open up Safari, and Google madly for a solution. Short of purchasing an Airsoft gun, pellet gun, laser pointer, or setting off firecrackers, my option for defense against my foe, my fate, is limited in this dense urban community. Then, I start to read posts from people across the country and around the world living under the same level of unwanted attention from the black birds.
YouTube is the real hero the day weasels scurried around my brain. I felt trapped, and my anxiety barometer on the rise, until I found hawk cry audio tracks on YouTube. Then, I found audio files of crows sending up the alarm. I blended the cry of a baby hawk calling to its mother with the panicked crows audio, and output the mix full blast from my little desk speakers. I played the screaming crows and crying baby hawk mix several times during the day and even recorded the tracks on my phone to play while smoking in my car in the street. It worked. My God it worked! I knew the silence had a short shelf life since ravens and crows recognize patterns and sniff out a fake quickly. I use those audio tracks, and the sounds still work, when King and Queen decide to irritate the dogs (they drop pellets on the dogs in the yard next door to provoke…so clever these two) or perch on the power lines close by and scream.
Henry and Bella didn’t count on a bitch having modern technology.
This morning, a day after the truce, if you’re following along, I walk out to the balcony. I crack the door open and the raven calls start. I listen to the calls come incrementally closer (audio track below). I wonder, briefly, if today is going to be one of the days Henry and Bella feel like causing shit or test the fence for a weakness missed during a previous campaign.
Agrippa, Germanicus and little Claudius (or Claudia) had the advantage of a large group/family of crows at their back when we lived in Venice. I rode my bike briefly when we moved and noticed the NoHo crows perch north of Vineland in the boughs of old pine forest beauty on Chandler Ave. I read the National Geographic articles below and wonder if the Venice crows first, have been accepted into the new clan, and second, is a newcomer required to start at the bottom of the social ladder? I’m gob smacked by Agrippa’s loyalty and bond. I have to admit though, shit used to be worse on the day to day.