A common raven was spotted this weekend on the Vineyard, but despite the name the sighting is anything but common. This is only the second sighting of the species on the Island. The first-ever sighting was on April 20, 2014, by Adam Burnett on Chappaquiddick.

Luanne Johnson spotted the bird in West Tisbury on Nov. 4. The next day, Kelly Spencer, Ken Magnuson, Allan Keith and Lanny McDowell were able to find and photograph this large corvid, which was busy chasing and capturing insects on the road.

Ravens are 50 percent larger than our American crows, though the size is difficult to determine without a nearby crow. Their head and neck are much more massive in proportion to the rest of their body, and they have a large, wedge-shaped tail.

In 1980, common ravens were found as far south as northern New England, and by 2010 they had spread southward to live in most of New England except for southeastern Massachusetts, southern Rhode Island and southern Connecticut. But recently there have been numerous sightings on Cape Cod since September, and according to the website ebird.org, they are spreading into southeastern Massachusetts.

Ravens are now our fourth species of corvid on the Vineyard, along with long-time residents blue jays, American crows, and the more recently arrived fish crows.

More photos of the common raven on Martha's Vineyard.