[In response to a question asking why ravens are used instead of pigeons as messenger birds in the Seven Kingdoms]
All that Elio says is certainly true; ravens are smarter than pigeons, better flyers, more able to defend themselves against hawks and other predators, etc.
I also liked the mythic resonances. Odin used ravens as his messengers, and they were also thought be able to fly between the worlds of the living and the dead.
Would ravens actually be better carrier birds than pigeons? Probably not... but it seemed to me that if I was going to have dragons and direwolves, that stretching the truth about ravens a bit was allowable as well. In the end, after all, A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE is a =fantasy= series.