I love ravens, not only because they’re really smart but because they’re great acrobatic fliers. They show off to impress each other.
Ravens live a long time — 30 to 40 years — and don’t breed until they’re 2-4 years old. In their first few years they hang out in flocks, get to know other ravens, and choose a mate for life.
Part of getting to know each other includes playing in the sky. When they’ve chosen a mate they make courtship flights together — swooping and diving, soaring with wingtips touching, locking toes and tumbling in the sky.
Have you ever seen ravens tumble? It’s rare to see in western Pennsylvania because we don’t have big flocks of ravens but they’re easy to find in winter in California.
Watch this superbly edited video by Haynes Brooke, filmed at Griffith Park in Hollywood, California. Go Full Screen in HD for an even better effect.
p.s. Read more about ravens in love in this February 2017 blog from the Walking Mountains Science Center in Avon, Colorado: Romance is in the Air for Ravens.