READ THIS ALERT: CROWS Always on the LOOSE in Kuala Lumpur……….READ MORE:
(just about all facts from: Monash Uni Malaysia 2016 Study: Alien Origins of the Common House Crow) Great research and clearly written.
1 The 80%
Daily they never fail. That is……… fail to go to work. Daily, most of them come home from work. Black all over with feathers, adults wings spanning sometimes to a metre when fully outstretched. Big specialist black beaks leading the way to and from what appears to be work. Every day is structured, a clock in-clock out business as if there is a mapped out program to target human waste in KL. 80% of all Malaysian House Crows are urban based. The other 20%? See Part 3 Paradise. (Coming soon)
Up and at em at just before first light. Bin and laneway raid GPS coordinates are locked in. From where I sit, the whole lot fly with purpose from a general North to South direction and carry out the opposite flight path at the end of the day. Bunches of up to 10-15 crows out of about 50-100. Numbers could be much more. Most commonly, bunches of 2-4 crows also cruise past. Every day without fail about half a klick (Aus for Kilometre) behind the main bunches a ‘late out of bed’ crow or two are working hard to catch-up with the rest of the workday crew. Their wing rate aim is to be like Hummingbird, but they fall well short. Those catch up Crow wings are flapping at least twice the rate of that of the up front bunches just cruising to work on that relaxing tail wind out of the north at 10-15 klicks/hr. Just nice that wind, pushing them to work and play with a combo of gliding and occasional flapping being the way of Crow.
Too soon after the Crows pass where I sit. They confirm GPS and peel off from formation just beyond our cluster of Condos to carry out ‘Lets consume ‘food’ raids throughout established suburbs of KL. Every day the peel offs are along similar flight paths – inner feast around Bukit Bintang, Pasar Seni and Pudu plus a few high stakes gamblers heading on a food fun feast into Cheras. However, that risk is very high.
As the well established story goes, Cheras is a place where some will enter but may never leave, humans, crows and other creatures alike. Having driven and walked in and around the fringes of Cheras for a while now, I tend to agree with the above. It is as if there is an invisible force grabbing from within that is not to be messed with. This grabbing, chunk of gut feeling is never really substantial enough to “really put your finger on it”. There always seems to be a Suburb like Cheras in every major City you visit. Anyway, I digress. Back to the workday run…….
Imagined conversation between crows on the morning run : “Yeh.. yehh..yehhh.. Augustine, I heard the Council’s come through a week early on the rubbish run and really cleaned out those rich Cheras bins. Logistics are working on how to make sure we can cover it today. They are suggesting the only way to cover is to raid Mid Valley, but you know how tough that Mid Valley flying mob is. We’d get nothin”. Augustine replies to Zainul, “Zainul, yes mate that is what you heard last night at home. I started that rumour and made sure the whole tree heard me as well. Now we got Cheras to ourselves. Come on! Lets go!…….. Yeh..yehhh..yehhhhh……“. The yehhh…dribbling out to nothing as the Crows rapidly lose interest in Conversation, probably due to the actual very small size of their brain.
Fifteen minutes before Sunset here they come again past where I sit heading home after a good days scavenge and ensure that around dusk it becomes exceptionally noisy around Masjid India, DBKL 1 and 2 roofs, Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman (Jalan TAR), Coliseum Cafe and Bar (good food and cold beer) and near SOGO. Random lone reasonably mature street trees – usually Ankasa or Raintree appear to be home. Buildings on one side, Crow and Mynah poo splatters public path below and half the tree overhanging the road. The noise is high pitched and constant. The sound is definitely not crow like when they are jostling for branch room. For some unknown reason they are competing with the Mynah birds for the same space in the same tree. It is difficult to figure out who is more offended at this blatant invasion of personal space, crow or mynah. Many landing attempts and much complaining about no room can be had before the final spark of Sun disappears below the horizon. If unfortunate enough to be standing or walking nearby, you are inclined to scream – “just SHUT-UP!!………with absolutely no impact on the rowdy bunch. Then….shouting not required any more. The Sun disappears and so does the the volume, down to a drowsy yeh…..ye……y……………
Coming Soon: Part 2 Lust and invasion