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17 October 2013 | Posted in Birds , Wildlife Advice

jackdaw / foxypar4
/ Foter / CC BY
Author Vicky Whitaker

This lively, smaller member of the crow family is a highly sociable bird and often joins up with rooks and carrion crows in autumn and winter to roost communally in huge numbers.

Five Fascinating Facts about jackdaws

  • adult birds are all black apart from a distinctive silvery sheen to the back of their heads with light grey, almost white eyes

  • are renowned for their love - and often theft - of bright, shiny objects that they accumulate in their nests

  • most jackdaws pair for life, sharing responsibilities for caring for their young and building nests in cavities of trees, cliffs and often in chimneys

  • hop on the ground with a quick, jaunty step, feeding on insects, fruit, seeds and scraps and is notorious for taking other birds eggs and fledglings

  • their call is a high-pitched, metallic sounding "tchack", which might account for the jack in their name. Daw was also traditionally used to mean knavish or stupid

If you would like to tell us about your wildlife experiences visit the wildlife advice pages on our website.Theres an easy online recording form for your sightings and the data is passed to the Sussex Biodiversity Record Centre enabling us to build up a picture of where our wildlife is living.

Or, if you have a wildlife query, ring our hotline - WildCall - on 01273 494777 or alternatively visit our advice pages.

jackdaw roost / Neil Fletcher jackdaw roost / Neil Fletcher


  • Jennie:

    31 Oct 2013 14:09:36

    Interesting to read about jackdaws. In our area they have an unwelcome tendency to attack windows, often very early in the morning, and even peck out the putty in windows. We have had to put up defences to protect the windows from the damage and the noise.

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