Things of Middle-earth
Description:Crow-like birds from the southern Misty Mountain and surrounding areas. They were used as spies by Saruman during the War of the Ring.
Flocks of birds, flying at great speed, were wheeling and circling, and traversing all the land as if they were searching for something; and they were steadily drawing nearer.
'Lie flat and still!' hissed Aragorn, pulling Sam down into the shade of a holly-bush; for a whole regiment of birds had broken away suddenly from the main host, and came, flying low, straight towards the ridge. Sam thought they were a kind of crow of large size. As they passed overhead, in so dense a throng that their shadow followed them darkly over the ground below, one harsh croak was heard. ...
'Regiments of black crows are flying over all the land between the Mountains and the Greyflood,' he said, 'and they have passed over Hollin. They are not natives here; they are crebain out of Fangorn and Dunland. I do not know what they are about: possibly there is some trouble away south from which they are fleeing; but I think they are spying out the land.
FotR, Book II, Ch 3, The Ring Goes South
Contributors: Moriel 7.1.03
Quotes added Lyllyn 7.6.03