raven, common name for the largest members of the family Corvidae ( crow family), ranging throughout the arctic and temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. The common raven, Corvus corax, is a glossy black scavenging bird about 26 in. (66 cm) long, with a call resembling a guttural croak. Long the subject of superstition and legend, the raven can be tamed and taught to mimic human speech. Ravens are classified in the phylum Chordata , subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Passeriformes, family Corvidae.
See studies by B. Heinrich (repr. 1991; 1999).
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