Cornelius and his wife Clementine, their children Camille and Clovis along with Uncle Claude can be rather raucous, to say the least.
They live within the Enchanted forest.
Just under the canopy of the trees in a clearing beyond the pond and garden, I toss out stale bread, rolls, biscuits for their enjoyment.
The above photos were taken back in the summer while they were enjoying a loaf of bread.
They regularly harass the Red Tailed Hawk family that lives across the road in the Pine clearing.
If Mr. or Mrs. Hawk should venture into the no-fly zone, which includes any airspace above Coral Cottage, they will receive a strong-arm escort back to their own Pine stand as seen in the photo below.
They also have loud and animated screaming competitions with the Blue Jay tribe, which I swear can be heard throughout the entire county.
Cornelius is always the first to announce his presence, and demand his meal be served. However he always remains on the perimeter of the open yard, never venturing near the house.
Until the other day.
I missed their regular feeding for several days, because we had rain.
Cornelius was so annoyed by my lack of attention, that he flew up into the poplar tree outside the kitchen door and loudly demanded I conform to his wishes.
Obviously Cornelius, has me well-trained. As I studied my shopping list the other day,
I thought to myself – good grief I’m shopping for a crow!
In the movie It’s a Wonderful Life – Uncle Billy had a pet bird (raven) named Jimmy.
Director Frank Capra’s trademark was Jimmy the Raven, this bird appeared in all Capra movies after 1938.
This same raven landed on the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz.
I leave you with a little more information about Jimmy the Raven.
See you later, Bye!
Here is a photo of Jimmy on the set of It’s a wonderful Life.
Jimmy belonged to Hollywood animal trainer Curley Twiford, who found the bird in a nest in the Mojave Desert in 1934. Twiford trained Jimmy to do an assortment of tricks, such as typing, opening letters, and even riding a tiny motorcycle: things that would make him appealing to use in films. Jimmy could understand several hundred words, though only around 50 were what Twiford called “useful”. It took Jimmy a week to learn a new useful word—two weeks if it had 2 syllables. Twiford said that Jimmy could perform any task that an 8-year-old child could (see bird intelligence).
His human co-stars were complimentary of the bird. “When they call Jimmy, we both answer,” remarked Jimmy Stewart on the set of It’s a Wonderful Life, noting that the raven “is the smartest actor on the set” requiring fewer re-takes than his human counterparts.
As he became more popular with the studio, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer had him insured for $10,000. Lloyd’s of London wrote a policy to cover Jimmy’s $500 a week fee as well as Curley Twiford’s $200 handler fee, in the event Jimmy forgot any of the words he would need on the set. Twiford credited these fees with keeping him solvent during World War 2. At one point, Jimmy had 21 stand-ins, 15 of which were female, who would fill in for him when the scene did not require any tricks or movement.
Jimmy received a Red Cross gold medal in acknowledgement of 200 hours spent entertaining veterans after the war, and his footprints were enshrined in cement at a large Los Angeles pet store, alongside Lassie and other Hollywood animal stars.
His last credited film was 3 Ring Circus in 1954, after which little is known about him. Though Curley Twiford said Jimmy would “probably live to be 150” years old, which the papers re-printed, in reality ravens seldom live more than 30 years in captivity. Twiford died in 1956 at the age of 60.