September 3, 2008


These big, black birds are everywhere in Sapporo. They fight and screech in the tree outside my window, they screech and bathe in the stream on campus, they screech and swoop around garbage piles. Apparently, this blight is native to Japan. I do remember black birds in Tokyo that had learned which color garbage bags hold food waste, but I don’t remember the birds being so omnipresent, or being so annoyed by them. 

And, these birds are huge! Two inch curved beaks, and a three foot wingspan make them pretty scary. There are signs around the university warning people to stay clear of their nests; they are known to attack. I’m waiting to see one swoop down and pick off one of those silly teacup dogs that girls carry around in purses. 

As you can see, they seem to be considering babies as well: