Putting the “crow” in necrophilia

It’s early April 2015, and John Marzluff and I are standing with a film crew attempting to capture some footage of a crow funeral to compliment a story they are working on about Gabi Mann. I’ve already set the dead crow on the ground, it’s placed just out from a cherry tree resplendent in springtime blossoms. After only a few moments of waiting, the first crow arrives and alights on the tree, its head cocking around to get a better look at the lifeless black feathers beneath it. I hold my breath for the first alarm call, ready for the explosion of sound and the swarm of birds that will follow it. But it doesn’t come. Instead, the bird descends to the ground and approaches the dead body. My brow knits together in surprise but, ah well, I think, the shots of it getting so close and then alarm…

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