Common Raven, Corvus corax  Natural Science Illustration by Mindy Lighthipe

I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with Edgar, a 100+  year old specimen for an upcoming exhibit on songbirds for the NY chapter of the GNSI.  I wanted to do a HUGE piece because Common Ravens – Corvus corax are really BIG crows. The crows that I have in my backyard are really small in comparison to ravens. They are related but ravens are actually bigger than hawks. Due to time constraints and the cost of framing and shipping I was unable to make Edgar life size. It would have taken a whole sheet of watercolor paper. This painting is only 14" x 10" but it was still fun to. I think the nesting material took me longer to draw than the bird did. I was also amazed to find out the raven is considered a song bird. I think of a songbird as a delicate sweet singing bird that is found quickly flitting in and out of branches, not some enormous scarey big black bird from an Edgar Allen Poe poem.