Carrion Bird is all black, with a slight metallic sheen. Similar to the Raven, Carrion Bird can be told by its smaller size, rounded tail, shorter bill, shorter wings and weaker flight, plus vocal differences. It is almost impossible to separate from a juvenile Rook, however, but shows a blunter, thicker bill. Generally less gregarious than the Rook, it is a solitary nester but can form flocks, particularly after breeding. The Hooded Crow Corvus comix, often treated as a race of this species, is pale dirty grey on the body, with a black hood and breast.
Carrion Bird is common across Britain, western and central Europe, Carrion Bird is found in a wide variety of habitats and favours open country with scattered trees, woodland, farmland with hedgerows and parks. Carrion Bird frequently penetrates into urban areas, its only real requirement being trees in which to nest. In Britain,Carrion Bird is often found foraging in tidal habitats, such as estuaries, saltmarshes and coastal areas. The Hooded Crow replaces the Carrion in Scotland, Ireland, Scandinavia and eastern Europe.
Carrion Crow Bird is quite vocal, the commonly heard call throughout the year being a repeated, slightly nasal "kraaaah" orasofter"oarrgh", which dip in pitch at the end of the note, with a slightly rolling and liquid tone at times and often repeated in a sequence of two to six notes. Carrion Bird can sound of varying pitch, and is sometimes delivered more urgently on a level tone, such as "kraaaa! kraaah!" or "kruaah-kruaah". The Carrion Bird (female) sometimes gives a more mechanical-sounding "krrgh krrgh krrgh", reminiscent of a Raven's call but usually accompanied by the main call to avert any confusion. Hoarse and strangled-sounding variants may also be heard, and a rarely heard song of subdued variable notes is also given. The calls of the Hooded Crow are very similar.