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Difference Between Crow and Raven

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The main difference between the crows and the ravens is their size. Though they are frequently mistaken as the same species, there are still more differences between these two birds that will be discussed in this article.

When we were young, we mistakenly assumed that crows and ravens were the same just because they have the same color. Both species are highly intelligent birds but don't share the same behavior or habitat. If you look closely, there's a big difference when it comes to their physical appearance. To understand the bigger picture, this article provides the differences between a crow and a raven and their similarities as birds.

What is a Crow?


A crow is known as a large bird with glossy black plumage, a distinct heavy bill, and creates a loud noise. The crow belongs to the genus Corvus. They are large too and are commonly seen on treetops and roadsides. They also perch on houses' rooftops, especially if the house has a koi pond. They feed on earthworms, small fruits, and small seeds. 

Crows come in smaller sizes like the size of pigeons. They measure approximately 17 inches long and weigh around 20 ounces. It has blunted and splayed wings and its life span is more likely to last eight years. One of the crows' most common adaptive skills is that they like to be in human-populated areas. 

They are more sociable and can be seen even during daylight. Their feathers are not so shiny and with a lighter shade of black. With the sunlight reflection, the color of their wings will be blended with a shade of purple and tinted green. Its bill is smaller and flat, and there's no hair on the top of it.

What is a Raven? 


In contrast to crows, ravens are much larger and comparable to red-tailed hawks. It measures 24-27 inches long and weighs around 40 ounces. Unlike the crows, the ravens have pointed wings, and they can live up to 30 years. Ravens are known to be less sociable and more cautious. 

They tend to give dark auras, which is why this type of bird most commonly appears in horror films. They are commonly seen in wilder areas, and they usually appear in the dark after the sunsets. Ravens have shinny feathers, and during the daylight, their wings appear to be with a shiny shade of blue or purple tint. Unlike crows, ravens have bigger and stronger curved shapes, allowing them to catch their targeted prey accurately.

A raven is also part of the genus Corvus and is also larger-bodied with its large feet and long bill. Ravens have thick necks and prominent shaggy throat feathers. Most ravens are also black. When ravens soar through the skies, they are known to soar high like a hawk. 

Differences Between a Crow and a Raven 


The difference in size is one trait that sets them apart. The raven is larger than the crow because its wingspan can be as big as 45 inches. The crows have smaller wingspans because they have smaller bodies compared to pigeons. The raven has a thicker beak than the crow. The crow also has fairly even feathers compared to the crow. The crow has a fan-like appearance on its tail, while the raven has a diamond or wedge-shaped one. 


The quality of their sounds is also distinct that you could easily tell them apart just by listening to them. The crow has an even caw while the ravens produce a deeper and throatier sound. If there is a chance that you can spot a blackbird right in front of you, you can easily determine whether it's a raven or crow based on the noise that is created.

A crow generally creates a loud "kaw" sound followed by a series of short kaws. It is made with a high-pitched, louder, and harsher sound.

On the other hand, the raven comes with deeper and less piercing sounds. It generally creates a "crooooooaaak" or "gronk-gronk" sound.


Aside from their differences in appearances and sounds, the raven and the crow have different actions when you look at them closely. The raven would soar while flying, while the crow would flap when they fly. When you watch them on the ground, you will notice that the crow will walk while the raven will walk and hop. 


When it comes to intelligence, crows are smarter than a raven. With their ability to blend with a human-populated area, they can survive easily and develop different ways of getting food for themselves. According to some research, crows perform as if they are 7-to-10-year-old humans. The truth is, crows can build a special relationship with humans who feeds them constantly.

Comparison Table: Crow Vs Raven

Weight0.55 kg1.1 kg
WingspanSmaller than the raven1 - 1.2 meters
TailFan-like shapeWedge-shaped
Appearance- Less curvy and smaller bears bristles in the base of the beak
- Throats feathers are less shaggy
- Curvy and bigger beaks
- Longer bristles in the base of the beak
- Throats feathers are more shaggy
LocationCommon in the Western StatesCommon in the Eastern United States
BehaviorForage in groups- Forage in pairs
- Strut with two-footed hops

Similitudes Between Crows and Ravens

Crows and ravens have several similarities. They are both "opportunistic omnivores", consuming everything from insects to garbage/scavenged human food. Ravens and crows belong to the smartest animals as one of their skills is that they can recognize human faces. They can also use tools to come up with clever strategies for their stunts in stealing food.

Studies reveal they can produce as many as 250 sounds! Aside from being vocal, they are also omnivores because they eat insects and earthworms. They are also sociable because they significantly value community.


Do Ravens and Crows get along?

According to research, these two species of corvids do not get along very well. Even though crows are larger than ravens, crows, in groups, often oppress ravens, especially during the breeding season. This is their way of protecting their food source and sending their compulsions away.

Which is more intelligent, the Crow or the Raven?

A study confirms that both birds are intelligent, but the crow is a little smarter than the raven. Indeed, they can imitate the sounds or calls of other birds.


Crows and ravens may look similar, but we can easily spot the differences between them if we look closely at their pictures. They may also look scary and suspicious because of their colors, but in reality, they are just normal but intelligent birds that have human-like abilities to survive in everyday life. There are various kinds of birds, but the crow and the raven are the birds that usually attract people's attention because of their color and size. It only takes a trained eye to tell them apart!

Feel free to comment and discuss about the article in the comment space below if you have any information or remarks to add. If you think we made a mistake, you can also report it there.
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About the Author: Nicolas Seignette

Nicolas Seignette, who holds a scientific baccalaureate, began his studies in mathematics and computer science applied to human and social sciences (MIASHS). He then continued his university studies with a DEUST WMI (Webmaster and Internet professions) at the University of Limoges before finishing his course with a professional license specialized in the IT professions. On 10Differences, he is in charge of the research and the writing of the articles concerning technology, sciences and mathematics.
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