Crow car 'attacks' waking Cambridgeshire residents

Image caption Crows are pecking at cars but not damaging them

Crows are keeping residents of a Cambridgeshire street awake by loudly pecking at their cars.

Neighbours living in Westbourne Close in Chatteris said up to six birds at a time were "attacking" car bonnets and wing mirrors as early as 04:00 BST.

The birds have mainly targeted dark cars but have so far not caused any damage.

A British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) spokesman said the crows might think their reflections were other birds.

One resident said: "They mess on the cars and make a heck of a racket, just peck, peck, pecking.

"They always seem to go for the black ones or dark blue cars."

Intruder crows

Another neighbour, who owns a charcoal grey vehicle, said: "They peck at the rear window and the mirrors, and I don't know why.

"I used to own a red car and they never attacked that one.

"If I get another car in the future, I'm going back to red."

He said it was "like having a woodpecker outside your bedroom window".

Paul Stancliffe, from the BTO, said: "You can see a really good reflection in a black car, and around the breeding season, they think they see an intruder - a crow that wants to take over their territory - and they're trying to drive it off."

He said once their young had fledged, the crows' aggressive behaviour should stop.

The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds website said while the car attacks might seem "bizarre", it is fairly common as the crows mistake their reflections for other birds.

It suggests people use car covers, or "let vehicles get dirty to reduce the shininess".

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