See a Raven Become a Nasty Neighbor and Attack Another Bird In His Own Nest

Written by Rachael Monson
Updated: October 24, 2023
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Most people see ravens as beautiful and intelligent birds. However, they also have a ruthless side. In this short clip, we see a raven attack on an osprey chick in its nest. The raven grabs it by the beak and then by the back of its neck as it tries to throw it out of the nest. Many viewers find this behavior horrifying, but let’s try to find out why this raven attacks the baby bird in the video below.

Watch the Horrific Raven Attack Below…

GRAPHIC CONTENT WARNING: Please do not watch if seeing the raven attack will upset you.

Why Did the Raven Attack Osprey Chicks?

The answer to this question is difficult to determine. Ravens eat pretty much anything. From carrion (dead animals) to nuts, berries, and even baby birds. They are opportunistic feeders, which means if they can get to it and consume it, they will.

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Think You Can?

In the case of our video (filmed in 2020), the camera on the osprey nest was set up by the Finnish Osprey Foundation in Satakunta, Finland. The researchers suspect the raven noticed the dead fish in the nest and wanted to take it for itself. A statement by the foundation posted in the comments of the original video explains the story in greater detail.

Raven eating carrion

Ravens often attack and kill defenseless babies of other birds.

©Raven eating carrion/Shutterstock.com

The Raven Attack

When the raven came close, the mother (Alma) flew from the nest in an attempt to ward it off. The raven fought her for a long time. It remains unclear how Alma became injured, but she lost the ability to fly during the battle. Unfortunately, a fox came along and killed her while she sat wounded on the ground. Alma’s death left the nest defenseless. The foundation’s statement claims another osprey was heard calling after Alma was killed. If it was the father (Ossi), he did not attempt to save the chicks. The raven came back and savagely attacked the chicks again. One of the chicks died during the raven attack, and another suffered minor injuries.

Both osprey parents tend to the chicks.

Usually, both osprey parents tend to the chicks and protect the nest. The pair mates for life.

©Joel Blazewicz/iStock via Getty Images

The Aftermath

The foundation consulted many experts and determined the only way to save the chicks was to move them. That’s because Ossi would be unable to do this himself due to their large size. Unfortunately, the chick injured in the raven attack was later found dead. Despite the loss of its siblings, the final chick did eventually fly from the nest and went on to live.

The History and the Future

According to the statement, this incident was not the first time this pair of ospreys suffered an attack at this nesting site. In 2019, a goshawk attacked the nest and killed all three chicks. Alma and Ossi nested in the site from 2005 to 2020 and raised a total of nine chicks successfully. In 2021, Ossi accepted a new mate and began breeding again. Osprey are protected by the U.S. Migratory Bird Treaty Act though they are no longer listed as an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN). The foundation continues to monitor several nest sites and livestream them.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Kiselev Andrey Valerevich/Shutterstock.com


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About the Author

Rachael Monson is a writer at A-Z-Animals where her primary focus is cats, big and small. She also works as senior veterinary assistant and has been in that field since 2012. A resident of Mississippi, she enjoys spending her off time playing video games with her husband and hanging out with her pets (a Bengal cat named Citrine and Basset Hound/Pomeranian mix dog named Pepsi).

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