crow gifts

After Years of Helping Crow Family, Man Was Left ‘Mind-Blown’ Over Their Homemade Gifts in Return

When you think of crows, you probably think of the mischievous birds that are often used in scary films and tv shows to create a spooky ambiance. As one Seattle man discovered, they can also make pretty decent friends.

Helping those in need

Stuart Dahlquist was a backyard bird watching enthusiast. Five years ago, he noticed a little crow family in one of his trees. He loved listening to the baby birds chirping while their parents came to and from the nest feeding them.


One day he went outside only to discover that the two baby birds had fallen from the nest and were sitting at the bottom of the tree. There was nothing the parents could do, so he knew he had to help.


Though the parents were highly distressed during his rescue, he was able to safely scoop the small crows up and put them safely back in their home. As a precautionary measure, he began leaving food and water out at the base of the tree in case of another fall. After that, he decided he would continue to put food out on his front yard for the birds. The crow family seemed to take particular notice of the offering. 


A gift of thanks

One day when he went to put food out for them, he found a fir sprig intertwined into a soda can tab had been placed in the spot where he always fed the crows.


“I noticed it straight away because I’m kind of sensitive about trash going where it belongs,” he told The Dodo, “but the pull tab being threaded onto the sprig of fir wasn’t normal and I hung onto it.”

The following day, there was another fir sprig-soda tab art piece waiting for him. The crows were leaving him little gifts to thank him for the food!


Crows are very clever birds.

Behavioral-ecologist Jennifer Campbell-Smith who spent her PhD studying crows at Binghamton University saw the photos on twitter. She wasn’t shocked that they were acting this way.


“I am very skeptical of random internet sources, but knowing these birds and how intelligent they are, I wouldn’t be shocked. It’s still an amazing example of the way crows are really watching us and are mindful of us—and, in their own way, [are] data mining for the best way to manipulate us,”

An Unlikely Friendship

Dahlquist says he has become quite close to the crow family since the accident, or at least as close as you can be to wild birds. They follow along with him on walks and will often swoop by him when he is out to say hello. Dahlquist plans on getting a tattoo of the special gifts he received in memory of his special bird friends.
It just goes to show that an act of kindness really can go along way – among humans and animals alike.

Julie Hambleton
Freelance Writer
Julie Hambleton has a BSc in Food and Nutrition from the Western University, Canada, is a former certified personal trainer and a competitive runner. Julie loves food, culture, and health, and enjoys sharing her knowledge to help others make positive changes and live healthier lives.