With the lilacs blooming as they do at this time every year, so does an Acadia University safety and security department warning about thieving crows.
Every year around the end of May, the university gets reports of problems with crows stealing — or attempting to steal — people’s food.
There are only a handful of incidents, and only a few crows, says university spokesman Scott Roberts.
It’s not a murder, but more of a mugging of the winged scofflaws.
“It’s just the occasional one,” Roberts said. “In fact, you have to look pretty hard on campus to find them.”
He said the incidents seem to happen when the crows have young, but it’s after convocation when there aren’t many students on campus, and only lasts for a few weeks.
“They’re a little but more aggressive, I don’t know if they’re looking for food for themselves or because the young need food,” he said. “This time of year they’re active, and then they disappear.”
No one’s been hurt, but some people have been spooked or lost food. There are no more than half a dozen incidents a year, and only one or two so far this year.
“They’re just going after the food. They’re getting close to people, and some people are unaccustomed to that,” Roberts said.
“It’s gone on since the beginning of time,” joked Roberts, who said the electronic notice to students is an annual event that predates his arrival at the university more than 15 years ago.
“We send out a note reminding people of what happens every year.”
He said its pretty well impossible to see more than one or two crows at a time.
Because there are so few birds and so few incidents over only a short period, Roberts said the university hasn’t worried about investing in noise makers or trying other means of forcing the birds out.
“It’s not like we’re overrun with them.”