On one of those very windy days that the Riverside area is known to experience at times, the nest of two baby crows was blow from a tall eucalyptus tree. The nest was wedged between a Y-shaped branch, which was snapped off by the force of the wind. The baby crows and the branch fell to the ground about 20 feet below. After hearing the cries of the little crows, I gathered them up and brought them into my home. My dog, Angel became their protector and adopted Mom. She kept a close eye on the two babies.
Unfortunately, one of the crow babies must have had internal injuries from the fall out of the tree and died two days later. At that time I knew very little about the care and feeding of crows. I did find some information about what they eat and adapted. I fixed up a mixture of Mighty Dog and Grape Nuts cereal.
My crow food recipe:
One can of Mighty Dog mixed grill (smelly stuff).
1 cup of Grape Nuts cereal, which I soaked in warm water till soft and mushy.
Mix the can of dog food with the mushy Grape Nuts.
Feed with an old ice cream stick.
The baby crow would encircle the ice cream stick with the food mixture on the tip and pull the food into her throat. Baby "Caw Caw" survived and grew up to an adult crow. I did not cage her. She would stay perched on my front porch most of the day. Angel watched over her so that nothing would attack her adopted crow. Eventually she went gooey eyed over a male crow and they paired up. About her third or fourth year, she hatched her own babies.
She would still fly onto the porch railing from time to time when I was out there and "caw, caw" at me. I even kept some of the mixture, a thicker version, on hand in the refrigerator as a treat when she came to visit. I learned that crows are intelligent and have a sense of humor. They like to take any bright and shiny object and hide it away in their stash. At times you get lucky and find their treasures wedged between boards, or any likely crow hideaway imaginable.
Some general information from Wikipedia:
The American Crow, Corvus brachyrhynchos, is a large passerine bird species of the family Corvidae. It is a common bird found throughout much of North America. The American Crow is omnivorous. It will feed on invertebrates of all types, carrion, scraps of human food, seeds, eggs and nestlings, stranded fish on the shore and various grains. American Crows are active hunters and will prey on mice, frogs, and other small animals. In winter and autumn, the diet of American Crows is more dependent on nuts and acorns. Occasionally, they will visit bird feeders. The American Crow is one of only a few species of bird that has been observed modifying and using tools to obtain food.
At the moment some crow populations are being devastated by the West Nile virus. They have no protection from the virus and die in about a week.
Also you can visit these websites if you want to learn more:
Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology at: http://www.birds.cornell.edu/crows/crowfaq.htm, Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology.
What Bird.com at: http://www.whatbird.com/ and search for American Crow.