While on O’Connell Bridge recently to watch and photograph a sunset, I noticed a flock of 25 or so Northwestern Crows flying across Crescent Bay towards the islands. I grabbed a shot as they went, but lost track of them and don’t know where they ended up. It did remind me of my curiosity about their roosting locations, however. Crows are known to roost communally in the winter, but I don’t know how consistent the location is, nor do I know of any locations that have been observed around Sitka. I have on several other occasions noticed flocks of even over 100 birds flying off over the water near sunset. This leads me to think they must often nest on nearby islands, though I do not know why they might choose such locations over what would presumably be nearer locations in the forests surrounding town.
It does occur to me that it might be possible to find a roosting location (especially if they use the same place for multiple nights) with a little bit of coordinated effort between land-based observers and people on boats. It would be interesting to know how many roost in a given location, how often the location changes, and where the location(s) might be.
If you’ve ever noticed this behavior in crows or ravens (especially around Sitka) or have found a communal roost, I would like to hear about it. Please leave a comment sharing your observation!