The University of Washington Bothell is home to over 10,000 crows according to the universities website. These crows must share the campus with around 5,000 students who attend the University year round which has led to many misconceptions being spread among the students about these mysterious birds that many people know very little about. A group of 2 other students and myself have been working on creating an art project to showcase these false accusations that students have made about the crows by making a drawing of crows completely made up of quotes that were collected from the student body.
The most common misconception that my group has recorded is that crows are “scary” and “mischievous” creatures. After doing research on the topic I learned that what many people see mischievous is actually traits that crows have to help them survive. The first trait that comes to mind when I think about this topics is the memory of a crow. Scientific research conducted by University of Washington professor John Marzluff has shown that crows have the ability to identify specific humans by their face, and at the same time remember that same face for an extended period of time. When people first learn about this trait, many feel that it is scary to them that a crow can remember who they are, but when you look further into the topic you can connect that crows use this information to identify who may a potential threat, which to the crows could be the difference between life and death.
My group wants to use this project to help vindicate the crows at the University of Washington Bothell. Along with the drawing of the crow made up of misconception quotes, there will also be another crow standing next to it which will be made up from actual facts about crows to help show the difference between what people believe is true compared to the actual realities of the crow population. We hope to change the views of as many of the crow critics who base their opinions on the misconceptions that have been spread around our campus community as can through this project. Personally I believe it is unfair to the judge the crow population without first understand why they behave in certain ways. Crows can identify specific humans by facial features, but humans for the most part cannot identify individual crows, so that raises the thought, perhaps crows are more well equipped to critique a human than we are able to critique a crow.