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Species Guide

Daurian Jackdaw

Coloeus dauuricus

The Daurian jackdaw, a member of the crow family Corvidae, is a bird of eastern Asia, sharing many characteristics with its relative, the western jackdaw. Adults typically measure around 32 cm in length, and their plumage is a striking combination of glossy black and creamy white, with the latter often forming a broad collar around the neck. The head, throat, wings, and tail exhibit a lustrous black, while the ear coverts are a grizzled grey. The species is distinguished by its black irises, contrasting with the grey-white irises of its western counterpart.

Identification Tips

When identifying the Daurian jackdaw, look for the creamy white plumage that extends from the lower parts up around the neck. Younger and darker individuals may be confused with the western jackdaw, but the black irises are a key distinguishing feature. The Chinese collared crow, also found in the region, is significantly larger and thus unlikely to be mistaken for the Daurian jackdaw.


This bird favors open woodlands, river valleys, and the open terrain of hills and mountains, where it can be observed engaging in its daily activities.


The Daurian jackdaw's range extends from eastern Siberia down to Mongolia and across much of China. In the colder months, it migrates southward within its range. It is an infrequent winter visitor to Korea, a rare winter guest in Japan, and has been recorded as a vagrant in Taiwan and occasionally in Western Europe.


A sociable creature, the Daurian jackdaw is often seen in the company of rooks, with which it shares many social behaviors.


The diet of the Daurian jackdaw mirrors that of its western relative, encompassing a variety of foods such as cultivated grains, insects, berries, eggs, carrion, and even faeces.


When it comes to nesting, the Daurian jackdaw is versatile, making use of tree hollows, rock openings, and even abandoned buildings when natural cavities are scarce. The eggs bear a resemblance to those of the western jackdaw, maintaining the species' close affinity.

Conservation status

The Daurian jackdaw is currently classified as Least Concern by the IUCN, indicating a stable population without immediate threats to its survival.

Daurian Jackdaw Sounds

Recorded by: © 
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Daurian Jackdaws on Birda


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