Spotlight on... Raven

Raven (Corvus corax)

The Raven

The intriguing raven (Corvus corax) is the largest of the black crows (crow, rook, chough, jackdaw and raven) present in the UK.  Ravens are one of the most widespread birds worldwide, being found in nearly any type of habitat. They are extremely versatile and opportunistic, having co-existed and thrived among humans for centuries in hopes of a quick meal. They will feed on almost anything: carrion, insects, grains, fruit, small animals and waste.

Ravens will generally roost on cliff ledges or in large trees but are also known to adapt in urban areas. They are believed to mate for life and both parents will care for their young. Breeding pairs will establish their territories and try to exclude all other ravens. Their breeding season is between mid- February and late May.

Ravens have been a common subject in mythology, native culture, folklore, art and literature. Though its feats of problem-solving has won its admiration and provide evidence that the raven is among the smartest of all birds.

Where are Ravens?

According to our database, ravens are found throughout Oxfordshire and Berkshire, but mostly in the north of Oxfordshire as well as Otmoor and Chimney Meadows. However, our database only includes information which people have provided to us (and we have collected), so a lack of records doesn’t mean that ravens aren’t present in the area. All it means is that no-one has told TVERC they’ve spotted them… yet!

Have you seen any Ravens?

If you spot any wildlife when you’re out and about, share your records and photos with TVERC. By letting TVERC know what you have seen you will help protect and improve your local environment by increasing the quality and quantity of data we hold. Photographs are always helpful too, as we keep an image gallery of species found in Oxfordshire and Berkshire.

Absence records are also very useful, so also let us know if you’ve been out and haven’t seen anything!

Your records can inform a variety of exciting biodiversity projects and help people make informed decisions about how to develop and manage land sustainably. We are a ‘not for profit’ organisation so rely on valuable help from skilled volunteers to improve our database.

Identification help

These sleek, all black ravens have a very robust bill and distinguished by its flat crown, shaggy throat (hackles), long-broad wings and wedge-shaped tail.

The raven is the largest of the perching birds, with adults reaching up to 69cm in length and a wingspan of more than 4 feet.

Ravens are acrobatic fliers, often doing sudden rolls, wing-tucked dives and playing with objects by dropping and catching in mid-air.

Find out more

Check out the links below for more information on Ravens

Where should we direct our spotlight next?

If you are a recorder, a local recording group or just have an interest in a species, send us your suggestion for a species, along with some facts and a photo (if possible) to