Corvus : A Life with Birds, Paperback
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


Esther Woolfson's daughter rescued Chicken, a fledgling rook sixteen years ago.

Amazed by their intelligence and personalities, Woolfson became fascinated by corvids.

Chicken, Spike the magpie, and, most recently, Ziki the Crow, have formed sibling relationships with Woolfson's daughters and with each other; cached food in her kitchen wall and laid eggs in her living room; called to her at dawn, and perched companionably on her knee of an evening; and taught her more than she ever expected about birds and about human beings.

Woolfson's account of her experiences is funny, touching and beautifully written, and gives fascinating insights into the closeness human beings can achieve with wild creatures.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 352 pages, Illustrations
  • Publisher: Granta Books
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Memoirs
  • ISBN: 9781847080806



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Have been waiting for this book to come out in paperback for what seems like an age. I’d read a review sometime ago, although not damning, was hardly fulsome in its praise so I was put off from buying the hardcover. Lesson one, take reviews with a pinch of salt as this book was an enjoyable and fascinating read into Corvids and birds in general. The book charts the author’s journey into bird carer, starting with Doves progressing to Rook, Magpie, Crow and it seems anything inbetween. The insights into bird behaviour makes compelling reading and suggests living with these smart incredible birds is the only way to truly get close to understanding how birds live and are. The author’s commitment to caring for birds is heartening, with just a slice of madness too! Highly enjoyable.

Also by Esther Woolfson