Iceland Mag

10 Reykjavik

Iceland Mag

Birds

Inhabitants of Egilsstaðir in East Iceland can't sleep at night: Town taken over by loud ravens

By Staff

  • A raven-þing Highly intelligent birds, the ravens play an important role in Norse mythology. Odin's two ravens, Huginn and Muninn, brought him news from around the worlds of men and gods. Photo/Heiða

Large "raven parliaments" have kept the inhabitants of Egilsstaðir town in East Iceland awake in recent weeks. Congregations, each counting up to a dozen ravens have been seen in the northern part of town. The loud calls and croaks of the ravens, who gather in trees, on rooftops and on top of street lights, have made it impossible for people to get to sleep. 

Read more: Video: Friendly raven visits local woman at work

Ravens spend the summer on heaths and in the mountains, but come closer to towns and human settlements during the winter. Ravens, who are a very social animal, then gather in large groups called parliaments or þing. This year an unusually high number of ravens has descended on Egilsstaðir.

The public health authority of Egilsstaðir has determined that the unusually high numbers of ravens in Egilsstaðir are most likely caused by some inhabitants feeding the ravens food scraps and leftovers. The municipality has therefore urged inhabitants not to feed the ravens inside town limits, reminding people that wild animals can fend for themselves.

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