Can Crows talk?

crows talking have a secret

Have you ever been heckled with such weird questions in your life? Maybe yes or maybe no. But, this type of question is roaming around and is well enough to make us ponder over certain issues. And, here, this article comes up with such a thing that will make you bewildered for a moment.

Bird’s human voice mimicking has always been enjoyable for humans. We know parrots mimic the human voice very well. Out of curiosity, we want to know if any other bird can talk like parrots.

Crows are a very common bird to us. It doesn’t matter where you live, crows are in almost every city, and their caw, caw, caw sound is very noticeable. Because of the color it possesses, there is always sneering and neglection it has to receive from the pedestrians. 

Human beings are undoubtedly the most intelligent creation of the almighty who has been blessed with the power of expressing their feelings,  thoughts, and emotion. Most of us don’t know the fact of a crow that some members of corvids or crows family can also speak, and can make sounds like other birds. Many of us often wonder if crows can talk like humans. I am here to answer the question of whether crows can talk or not, and I am also going to share exciting information about crows and crows talk. So, stay with me to get all the exciting news about crows.

Can Crows Talk

This leads us to the question,” Can Crows Talk?”.

The answer is Yes. Crows can mimic human voices, and they can talk in the same way as parrots. Crows have good physiology for mimicking human voices, and the syrinx of crows works in favor of the process.

 As they are not often found in the human touch like parrots, you may find it rare to experience the talk of crows. They have a good memory for copying the human voice, but crows can not fluently use their vocal system like parrots. As a result, you will not experience the same result from crows as parrots. 

Let’s know how they do it and jump to other exciting information about crows.

All about talking birds

In general, talking birds are birds that can mimic the speech of humans. Birds learn to communicate following their owner’s speech. The more we talk to them, the easier it will be for birds to interlocute. Birds imitate their parents or sometimes they can be affected by the dominant birds of their flock.

It has been suggested that mimicry amongst birds is almost ubiquitous and it is likely that eventually, all species will be shown to be able to have some ability to mimic extra-specific sounds though it does not have to be human speeches only. But, there are other bird species who can flawlessly imitate the human voices and can clearly and perfectly interact with human beings. The followings are a few examples of these birds–


Talking lyrebirds are available and always fond in Australia. They are great mimics of many sounds, including the human voice.

Australian Magpie

These species have the ability to mimic human speech including words and phrases. In some cases, the mimicry of magpies is more clear and more accurate than that of Lyrebirds.


The northern mockingbirds are excellent talkers. Although they may not learn extensive vocabulary, the clarity of their speech has been compared to amazon parrots’.


Here is our sensation. Several members of the corvids family can mimic human speech and communicate like other talking birds.

The fact about crows talking

If you are going to compare crows with other talking birds, especially with the very common and available bird species- “parrots”, then, I will surely have to clarify it that that may lead you to wonder. For, Crows can talk but confess it that it is never more than parrots. There are several reasons exist though why the crows do not have the same capability as the parrots. Let’s get into those reasons!

  • Crows are the members of the corvid family as we have already mentioned. They are highly intelligent and known as social birds. They have not been considered as admirable as parrots and also do not take into consideration keeping as “pet birds’. However, The parrots draw much more attention than those and they are very considered pet birds. As a result, parrots get to be very closed to humans and have much time to interact with them. But, crows fail to be admired like that. There is a lack of a closed-human relationship with them(crows). So, parrots are much more likely expected and are supposed to talk far more clearly and perfectly than crows.
  • If it is the parrots, they use their tongue while talking, making sounds. On the other hand, crows do not use tongues. Rather they use “syrinx” which is a vocal organ placed at the base of the bird’s trachea. This syrinx enables some birds to make more than one sound simultaneously. Using their syrinx, they repeat the exact sound maintaining the same voice, tone, mode, and attitude. In addition to that, cows have excellent memory that helps them to remember words, and learn something a lot faster than any other bird.  

So, these are basically the differences between the capability of a crow and a parrot.

How do Crows copy human voices? 

Crows have good memorization, and with the help of their tongues and throat muscles, they can mimic sounds. Crows can not talk most accurately as they do not understand human words. They hear our words, memorize them and try to mimic them. 

The main organ that helps crows to talk is their syrinx. It is located near their bronchial tubes. They have a pretty good intelligence for memorizing human words and mimicking them. Their brain function is in their favor for mimicking.

How do crows talk?

Now, we are in the main idea of this article. As we already got to know that crows can more or less talk or can make sounds, and imitate people’s sounds, and accents to maintain the same mood. And here, the question piques- how?! Literally how they can do so? Is there anything special in it? Let’s dissolve this —

We human beings are the best creature of the almighty. We can express our feelings, emotion, and whatever we want to deliver in front of the audience. Crows can not do that as human beings do! They basically use their “ vocal box” to make a sound which has another name called “syrinx”.They can mimic words with the help of this organ. Also, there are other things that have to be considered–

Syrinx is a bird’s vocal organ that is made up of ossified cartilages, muscles, and vibrating membranes. Birds have this organ in place of vocal cords. They do not require a tongue to make sounds. Crows do not understand what they are saying but mimic human voices only using their syrinx.

Why Crows can talk?

Essentially, crows have around 1.5 billion neurons in their brains. This is the same amount found in some monkeys’ brains. The head of a crow is so small that the neurons are very tightly packed and involved. That leads to a strong and effective communication of those neurons across the brain and it makes the crows much more intelligent than you think. That’s why crows can mimic words and even in some cases, they have the capability of formulating the full sentence.

Research unveiled that crows are not only playful and mischievous but also intelligent. They know what they know and ponder over the content of their own which is a manifestation of their high intelligence. They use tools to solve complex problems and remember faces for years and can mimic sounds they hear. In fact, crows have excellent memory that’s why they can make sounds a lot faster in comparison to others.

How can you make a crow talk according to your desire?

There is no doubt in the minds of many bird researchers that both parrots and crows are brilliant birds.

If a bird can fly from one country to another, back all the way, and live in the same forest, we call it the Natural Way. But it does require a lot of ingenuity beyond the obvious instinct to make this happen.

Yes, it is often said that there can be no more intelligence in the brain the size of a nut. However, what the bird’s brain lacks in size, builds up in neurons.

The crow’s brain encapsulates 1.5 billion neurons. Neurons are messengers. They use electrical energy and chemical signals to transmit information between the various areas of the brain and the nervous system.

Therefore, it is possible to train a crow to speak. Teaching speech is more straightforward if you have raised a chick in your home. Ravens have a natural ability to pick out sounds in their natural environment and mimic them. Therefore, your bird will learn to talk very quickly when it is sitting close to people.

You can teach crow to talk especially in captivity. Crows are so intelligent that they can learn cognitive skills when anybody says something in front of them. And if are lucky enough to have raised a crow from a young chick, you need not be bothered much. It will be fairly easy for you to teach birds to talk. Because this bird already has trust in you and might have considered you as a close partner of the same flock it belongs to. Interestingly, it is also plausible to teach a crow which is a visitor and sits in your backyard.

However, you should bear in mind that crows will not be able to appropriately pronounce your words while parrots can do so in a much better way. Parrots may learn to repeat their name, but crows can ask for a specific food, count how many toys they have, or simply reply to your greetings.

The idea is to start with simple words such as hello or hello. Additionally, the more enthusiastic your voice becomes, the more crow will gain interest. Also, sound reinforcement as a delicacy offering is a very effective tool for training your crow. This is an excellent combination for treating our favorite birds.

However, parrots and crows have different personalities. Therefore, it is useless to harass your crow talking when he feels embarrassed. Ravens need to get close to humans before they can feel comfortable talking in front of them. When your bird feels very stressed, there will be less trust. And your bird will take a long time to meet you.

Another interesting theory is that parrots breed well and are in captivity. And the parrots are learning to speak better than their parents.

Some ways that will help you teach a crow to talk and make sounds —

Start with simple words

With time, the crow will be capable of talking much more clearly and more that may surprise you. But you will do a big mistake if you expect more at the very beginning. So start your teaching method with a very simple word. “Hi”, “hello”, “peekaboo”, “good morning” etc could be great starters. As long as you repeatedly utter these words, the crow will mimic you. Repetition of these words is really important because it allows the crow to learn the words over time.

Make your way enthusiastic

Expression is so important. If you say something enthusiastically and are being more cheerful, the crow will understand how much excited you are with the words. And it will enthuse them to learn quickly and start mimicking. The more excitement you deliver, the more interest the crows show you to learn the words.

Give them reward

To be awarded for something is definitely a remarkable experience that will lead everyone to strive hard for another bigger accomplishment. In some ways, it happens with animal species. Just like in dog training, if you reward the birds after saying a word correctly, then they learn much faster and it is also important to praise per as they are on right track with learning things.

Training younger bird

Studies revealed that young birds are much more eager and can learn more quickly than adult ones. So, if it is possible, pick a younger one, nourish it and teach it in your own ways.

Honestly, all crows cannot speak like a parrot even though they are clever and can speak and imitate words and sounds. This is because some crows may be embarrassed to talk. They don’t even want to express themselves this way.

Otherwise, each crow cannot replicate with the same precision even if given the same training. Crows that live far away from humans will not utter a human name or sound for the rest of their lives. However, young crows can imitate more words than their parents.

Build a trust zone and make sure the birds have belief in you

The crows are suspicious. They do not easily bring faith in anyone. So the first task you have to do is to establish a strong bonding with them. Spend time with them, sprinkle food and talk to them as much as you can. Once the trust is well-rooted, it will be easier for you to teach crows to talk.

Set and maintain a routine

Maintaining a routine helps to be on track and learn more quickly. If you can set a daily routine and utilize a particular spare time, the birds will get into a routine that keeps them on track. You will also find that once your crow learns a few basic words, it becomes much easier for the bird to learn additional words and phrases and even complete sentences.

Why haven’t you seen the talking crow birds around you?

There is actually one main reason that is fairly enough to reply to this inquiry. Crows are basically known as social birds, they love to roam around nature. Scarcely have we seen the crow species as a pet bird to anyone. We, people, are very fond of others, especially parrots. It is very rare to keep a crow as a pet. As a result, we do not have the chance to make a tight bonding with them, to get to be very close with them as well.

The contribution crows have to our environment

Have you ever thought about the contribution crows have done to our nature? As far as anyone is concerned, it may be well enough to make you puzzled whether pondering over that question. But yes! Crow itself has contributed to our nature too through its careful observation and activities. The contributions they make can be counted as follow–

Crows are revered because of their adaptability, intelligence, and loud ‘caw’ sound. At the same time, they are disliked for destroying crops and being a nuisance. But it is a sigh of relief nb that, they are less destructive than the initial thinking. The birds are highly adaptive and found throughout the world. 

The American crows are found in the grasslands and agricultural land while the common crows are found in Northern America, Asia, the Pacific, Africa, and South America. As we have already got to know that crows possess excellent communication skills and have an excellent memory. They have the ability to identify a person with bad intentions from a group of people. 

Crows are social birds and live in an extended family where they look out for each other. Regardless, their importance in the ecosystem is undisputed.

Crows eat dead carrion, thus preventing decay and, consequently, an influx of insects. A crow family can eat 40,000 grubs, caterpillars, armyworms, and other insects in one nesting season. There are a lot of insects that many gardeners and farmers consider pests. These good environmental citizens also transport and store seeds. As a result, it contributes to the renewal of forests.

Crows are occasionally blamed for the damage caused by other birds and animals. Many people consider crows a nuisance for scattering waste all over and making loud noises at night. But, the truth is that crows are diurnal and neither feed nor move at night. Despite this, crows play a vital role in waste management. They consume tons of waste every year, preventing the spread of disease and bad odor.

As omnivorous birds, they have a highly-efficient digestive system like those vultures. They can feed on meat and plants. Their intelligence plays a vital role while scavenging for food as the birds have been observed using tools to access food. The most effective way to deter crows is to keep dustbins closed or empty; otherwise, there will be a high possibility for crows to find a way to access them.

Can crows understand human language?

Crows are known for their extraordinary smarts and have been observed making tools to dig food out of tight spots. Now a five-year study by scientists at the University of Washington has found they possess an unusually good memory for human faces linked to a stressful event. As a protective mechanism, it can be said that with time, crows have learned to pay attention to human speech. But there is no strong deed over this that, they can get the exact language human deliver and want them to express.

Can You keep a crow as a pet?

As mentioned earlier, birds learn from their parents or the leading birds in the herd. And if parents imitate the sounds of humans, chicks will learn those words even more than their parents. Now, breeding crows and captive crows are not uncommon.

Since 1972, crows have been protected under the Migratory Birds Act. Therefore, “it is illegal to kill, control, import, export, transport, sell, buy, trade, or distribute goods, eye parts, nests, or eggs without the conditions of a valid permit issued by Federal Regulations.”

Technically, this means you cannot keep a raven as a pet or train it unless you have permission to rescue, renovate, or use it as an educational animal. In case you find a crow injured, do not keep it. Take him to the nearest wildlife rehabilitation center immediately. Yes, you can teach the raven to speak, especially in captivity. Ravens are so clever that they can learn comprehension skills when speaking words in front of them.

However, ravens may not pronounce your words correctly, while parrots will not be able to replicate your words. Parrots may learn to repeat their names, but ravens can ask for food, count how many toys they have, or respond to your greetings.

Interesting facts about Crows 

Why Do Crows Thrive in Human Nature?

You have to understand the nature of crows to understand why they thrive in human habitations. Crows are all animals; they will eat anything and everything.

They can eat berries, vegetables, insects, fish, and other small mammals. However, they will simply go through the dumps in search of human food and even eat some of the meat that has been partially eaten. In short, crows never have a shortage of food in a human habitat.

In addition, ravens are remarkable at recognizing human faces and associating the good with the bad. Moreover, they do nothing on their own. They move in droves, and as they can communicate, they are always eager to share information with neighboring flocks.

If a person kills a raven by mistake, he will have to deal with the anger of not only a flock of ravens in one place but also in the surrounding area.

How To Tell The Differences Between A Crow And A Raven?

Ravens and crows look very similar, so they often confuse each other. If you look and listen carefully, however, you will be able to see the difference.

Members of the family Corvidae, crows, and ravens are the only North American species of complete blackbirds. Both are common throughout Colorado, though there are few crows in the eastern part of the country. The main difference between crows and ravens is their size and sound. The crows are the largest of these two, with a wingspan of about 45 inches. Crows have tiny wings, and they have bodies like doves. Ravens and crows both talk loudly. Studies have shown that crows have a “name” with about 250 different sounds! To distinguish the crow from the raven, listen to their calls. Ravens often have the sound of a caw, caw, and crows have a deep, crawling sound.

If you can see the bird closely, you will see that crows have soft feathers on their heads and especially on their throats. They also have a beak larger than crows, which have a longer curve to the end. If you are watching birds fly, one of the signs you should look for is the tail feathers. The tail feathers of the crows are about the same length, so their tails will look like a fan during flight. Ravens, on the other hand, have tail feathers that vary in length, so their tails will look like diamonds. Another sign to consider is how they fly. Usually, ravens fly while ravens fly. Another difference can be seen when the birds are down, too. Ravens are usually walking, while crows are going to make a combination of walking and jumping.

Despite many differences, crows and ravens have many similarities. “They are opportunistic omnivorous,” devouring everything from insects to dead meat and processed human food and garbage. Both species are very close-knit birds with close-knit family structures. Both are among the most intelligent animals on earth. An article in the September / October issue of Colorado Outdoors compares the two birds and describes some of the ways in which their intelligence has been studied and observed. They can both see a person’s face. They are among the few animals that use tools, and they use clever tricks like throwing nuts down to open them up.

Final thoughts

In a nutshell, crows can mimic human sounds pretty well. As they are not always around humans, they need to be taught certain words and phrases. The training is undoubtedly time-consuming and a little bit difficult as crows are not the fast learners as parrots are. 

If you are thinking of training a crow to talk like parrots, make sure you follow cautions from experts. It has been a pleasure serving you with information. If you have any further questions or experiences related to crows, please write them down. Happy learning!


Afroza always liked to study English which led her to write, spreading knowledge for which she is only known to do.

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