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The title of this article is official, but it comes from a non-English source. If an official name from an English source is found that is not from the English Super Mario Bros. Encyclopedia, the article should be moved to its appropriate title.

Artwork of a Kuro
First appearance Donkey Kong Jr. (1982)
Latest appearance WarioWare Gold (2018)
Variant of Nitpicker

Kuro, originally referred to as Birds[1], are flying corvid Nitpickers that make their debut in the Donkey Kong Jr. arcade game. In most versions, they sport thick beaks and flap their wings in a brisk pace while flying.


Donkey Kong series[edit]

Donkey Kong Jr.[edit]

Birds in various different Donkey Kong Jr. versions
Birds in various different Donkey Kong Jr. versions
Birds in various different Donkey Kong Jr. versions
Birds in various different Donkey Kong Jr. versions

Kuro, referred to as Nitpickers[2][3] or Birds[1], make their first appearance in stage 4 of Donkey Kong Jr. Like the Nitpickers in stage 2, these Birds similarly fly horizontally across the screen, descending progressively as they meet its margins. They flee off-screen after performing four such flights. Unlike those Nitpickers, they do not bombard Donkey Kong Jr. with eggs, and are designed to look more like ravens in most versions, given their dark coloration and chubby structure. They can be defeated the same way nonetheless, as falling fruit can put an end to them.

In the Atari 2600 port, a single bird flies left to right at the bottom of the stage. In the Intellivision port, they fly off the left or right side of the screen rather than doing their zigzag routine.

Donkey Kong Jr. Math[edit]

A lone Kuro, known as a nitpicker, appears in the +-×÷ Exercise mode of Donkey Kong Jr. Math. It hovers over the chains, showing which position Donkey Kong Jr. should fill. It will also show where Junior made his mistakes.

Donkey Kong (Game Boy)[edit]

A single Kuro nest can be seen in the Game Boy Donkey Kong, in Stage 9-4 of the Tower, a boss stage that resembles stage 4 from Donkey Kong Jr. It spawns two Kuro birds on-screen at a time. After rising slowly from their nest, Kuro fly horizontally across the room, moving down a short distance and turning back upon meeting the room's limits. They perform three complete flights, and flee outside the map of the stage afterwards. Kuro can not be practically defeated, as the stage they appear in presents no means of combat against them. They now attempt to drop eggs on Mario if they fly above him. Unless they are avoided, or deflected with a handstand, these eggs can plummet down on the character and cause him to lose a life.

Kuro are identical in behavior to Hawks and Kaibādo, which are other successors of Nitpickers.

Family BASIC[edit]

In the Family BASIC accessory to the Family Computer, it is one of three programmable bird characters. It also makes a cameo on the Message Board.

WarioWare Gold[edit]

In WarioWare Gold, two Birds have to be avoided by Donkey Kong Jr. as he climbs two ropes in the third difficulty of the Donkey Kong Jr. microgame. They fly on a straight line from left to right, across the ropes.


Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ニットピッカー[4]


From「黒」(kuro, black), after their Game Boy coloration; also a play on the English word "crow"


  1. ^ a b Instruction manual for Atari 8-bit port
  2. ^ Instruction manuals for Atari 2600, ColecoVision, Intellivision, and Coleco Adam ports
  3. ^ Instruction manual for Atari 7800 port
  4. ^ a b Family BASIC handbook.
  5. ^ Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten. Page 75.
  6. ^ Kazuki, Motoyama. Volume 30 of the KC Deluxe manga, page 51