The American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) is a large passerine bird species of the family Corvidae. It is a common bird found throughout much of North America. In the interior of the continent south of the Arctic, it is simply called "the crow", as no other such birds occur there on any regular basis.
It is one of several species of corvid that are entirely black, though it can be distinguished from the other two such birds in its range—from the Common Raven (C. corax) by size and behavior and from the Fish Crow (C. ossifragus) by call (but see below). It is also distinguished from the Raven by its smaller, more curved bill than the parallel bill of the raven, and its squared tail.
American Crows are common, widespread and adaptable, but they are highly susceptible to the West Nile Virus. They are monitored as a bioindicator. Direct transmission of the virus from American Crows to humans is not recorded to date, and in any case not considered likely.
Although both the American crow and the Hooded Crow strongly resemble in size, structure and behavior, their calls are different. The American crow nevertheless occupies the same role the Hooded Crow does in Eurasia.