People Are Feeding Ravens In The Westfjords

People Are Feeding Ravens In The Westfjords

Photos by
Art Bicnick

Published February 7, 2017

The iconic Icelandic corvid is actually in decline across the country, but in the Westfjords, their numbers are not only greater than ever; people are actually leaving out food for them there.

RÚV reports that it has become somewhat of a local pastime to feed ravens. These very intelligent and very large birds dine on a variety of products, and Icelanders in the Westfjords most commonly feed them carcasses of various animals and tallow.

The Icelandic Institute of Natural History (IINH) actually lists the raven as being in “overwhelming danger”, as their numbers have been on the wane across the country. Kristinn H. Skarphéðinsson told Grapevine this is due in part to an increasing number of people killing them, while at the same time, their typical food sources – carcasses – have been on the wane.

Icelanders in the Westfjords, however, contend that ravens have been on the rise in their region – possibly due to the large number of Icelanders who deliberately feed them.

Not everyone, however, is on board with feeding ravens. Sigríður Gísladóttir, a veterinarian who lives in Ísafjörður, points out that the food typically left out for ravens is not only enjoyed by these birds, but also by cats, dogs and seagulls. Furthermore, the behavior of these birds towards their food could possibly attract rodents.

“Because they’re so intelligent,” she told reporters. “When a raven has eaten its fill, it stores the remainder of the food under the corrugated iron on people’s roofs, keeping it there over several days,” a practice that can attract mice and rats, which are known to live in harbour towns such as Ísafjörður.

As such, those who do want to feed ravens are advised to only leave out a small amount of food, so that any prospective ravens eat only a meal’s worth at a time.

The further adventures of ravens in Icelandic news:

Raven VS. Cat

Ravens: The Natural Enemy Of Traffic Signs

Ravens Disembowel Lamb, Farmer Plots Revenge

Raven Teases Eagle, Survives


News
Pirate Party Want Referendum To Restart EU Talks

Pirate Party Want Referendum To Restart EU Talks

by

The Pirate Party have put forth an EU referendum proposal to restart negotiations with the European Union, reports RÚV. The

News
Keflavík Airport Grinds To Halt Over Security Issue

Keflavík Airport Grinds To Halt Over Security Issue

by

Keflavík airport ground to a halt yesterday afternoon when all flights were put on hold and passengers asked to go

News
Fake News! No, There’s No Football-Fueled Baby Boom in Iceland

Fake News! No, There’s No Football-Fueled Baby Boom in Iceland

by

A single tweet from an obscure Reykjavík anesthesiologist on Monday suggested that a spike in the number of hospital epidurals

News
“Major Deception” Occurred With Bank Sale, Investigation Finds

“Major Deception” Occurred With Bank Sale, Investigation Finds

by

The Parliamentary Investigation Commission (RNA) has concluded that the German bank Hauck & Aufhäuser was never an investor in The

News
Iceland’s Epic Euro Smiting Triggers Baby Boom

Iceland’s Epic Euro Smiting Triggers Baby Boom

by

It’s been nine months since Iceland’s smiting of England in the Euro Cup – often referred to as the island

News
Environment Minister Supports Shutting Plant Down

Environment Minister Supports Shutting Plant Down

by

Iceland’s Environment Minister, Björt Ólafsdóttir, believes shutting down the United Silicon plant in Reykjanesbær is an acceptable course of action.

Show Me More!