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Scarecrow scares crow

Birdwatchers in Devon were perplexed by the bizarre behaviour of a large black bird yesterday, that local farmers reported as being ‘distressed and alarmed’ every time it passed a certain part of a cornfield. ‘At first we thought there must be some sort of dangerous predator lurking in the long grass’ said keen twitcher Mike Springer, because it was definitely frightened by something. ‘Then someone pointed out that the bird’s distress seemed to increase every time it flew near a couple of sticks that had been propped in the middle of the field, with an old jacket slung over them and a tatty straw hat on top.’

The ragged clothes on the old sticks have been a feature of the field for many years, and are a popular resting spot for passing rooks and jackdaws. But this particular bird, later identified as Corvus Corax, or the common raven, was clearly scared of something. ‘We think it might it might have been the particular clothes stuck on the effigy’ said one of the birdwatchers. ‘The figure wasn’t wearing an anorak, or beige nylon trousers, and to be honest we were all a little alarmed ourselves!’

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Posted: May 28th, 2008 by NewsBiscuit

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