Regardless of what you have heard, a corvid is a family of birds that include rooks, ravens, jackdaws, jays and magpies. These are considered the smartest birds on earth. Killdeer are considered the dumbest birds. I am not so sure. Many people consider sheep to be stupid, but they are not. They are timid and that confuses some people. Killdeer build their nests among the rocks with each nest holding four eggs. All four eggs are pointed toward the center of the nest, and I don't know why. Corvids, on the other hand, build their nest high in the trees and can solve problems and use tools. A crow is as smart as a seven year old child in the area of problem solving and abstract thinking. Aesop's fables include the story of the Crow and the Pitcher. A thirsty crow drops pebbles into a partially filled pitcher of water, to raise the water level so he can drink. Aesop thought the moral of the story is that necessity is the mother of invention. I think the moral of the story is: Don't make corvids mad. Crows remember people and their behavior and talk to other crows about people. Ravens are much like crows except they are larger and their call is more shrill. A raven can live over 20 years in the wild. Ravens usually travel in pairs, but often young birds form flocks. A flock of ravens is called an unkindness. Ravens have historically been revered as spiritual figures, associated with witches and death. On a brighter note, magpies are also part of the corvid family. A group of magpies is called a charm. Magpies are a protected, migratory bird that can not be killed without a state and federal permit. Magpies have tails the length of their bodies so they can make quick turns in flight. In medieval times, traditionally, people counted the number of magpies in a charm and each number signified a different fortune, much like fortune cookies today. The magpie totem is a good luck symbol. Life is good.