A black raven and white raven stand on green grass and tussle over the same bit of food.

Photo Credit: Mike Yip / Flickr

North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre Nurse Rare White Raven Back to Health

They are special to the Qualicum region

The rescued bird could be the oldest white raven

When you think of ravens you think of the colour black.

But apparently, that’s not always the case.

Every few years, a white raven shows up around Qualicum Beach. Experts think they’re all part of the same family with a specific gene that gets passed down, kind of like that one cousin with red hair.

A white raven was spotted in Errington in May of this year. It may be the same one that someone brought into the North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre last Monday after finding it injured and dying on the ground.

The white feathers and beak make these birds a bit delicate, and they don’t often live very long. So the folks at the Centre are pretty excited to get to take care of this one.

“We’re very thrilled to have the privilege and the honour to work with this bird,” said the Centre’s founder, Robin Campbell. She told CHEK News that white ravens have “a compromised immune system, and they just don’t seem to make it to maturity so we’re hoping that in a captive setting we can overcome that.”

A white raven sits on a perch in front of a wood fence. It is looking off to the side.
Parksville Qualicum Beach / Flickr

The bird is getting stronger by the day, but it still needs to be fed by the Centre’s animal care technicians. If they can keep it healthy and care for it while it grows up, it could live to be the oldest white raven ever.

While there may be other white ravens in the world, the ones that live around Qualicum Beach are the most well known.