Honchkrow is a dark-blue avian Pokémon with plumage resembling a person dressed in formal attire, one that most resembles a mob boss. It has a large feather crest resembling a fedora hat that has spikes extending from the back. It has circular red eyes with white sclerae and dark blue eyelids. Its yellow beak is slightly curved, and its head is supported by a broad, short neck. Honchkrow has a white and prominent crest of feathers on its chest that bears resemblance to a beard or cravat. Its wings have red feathers on the inside. Honchkrow has black feet with four toes. The tail's base is a white, cylindrical stalk, on which there is a growth of red feathers on the end. Honchkrow is known to be ruthless. With a mere cry, it can summon and organize flocks of Murkrow in this manner and is known as the "summoner of the night" by the pitch-black darkness that often accompany such a spectacle.
It is said that a Honchkrow will never forgive the mistakes of the Murkrow that follow it. These flocks have been seen flying at night. The purpose of the flocks is unclear, but they are known to collect food for the Honchkrow that organized them. Honchkrow normally spends the daytime hours tending to its feathers in solitude. It is a scavenger that lives in swamps, forests, human towns and cities, and plains.
Honchkrow's English name uses a Japanese-origin word in its name ("honcho" is derived from hanchō), while Honchkrow's Japanese name uses a western-origin word in its name ("don" is derived from Italian don and Latin dominus). Both are leader-like names and sometimes are used for leaders of shadier organizations.
Honchkrow is based on a crow or raven. With its bulkier, more powerful appearance, Honchkrow looks much more like a raven than its pre-evolved form does, but its coloration resembles that of the hooded crow. While Murkrow appears to be based on witches of western folklore, Honchkrow's appearance is reminiscent of a crime boss, giving a new interpretation to Murkrow as a gang member under Honchkrow. Its crest even looks like a wide-brimmed fedora hat, an article of clothing often associated with mobsters. However, Honchkrow's tail does resemble a besom broom, which has long been connected with witchcraft, and its hat- and beard-like feathers also give the impression of a sorcerer or wizard. The design of Honchkrow's hat could also take inspiration from the hardened crests likened to that of the great hornbill and the cassowary.
Honchkrow is a combination of honcho (a leader or boss) and crow.
Dongkarasu is a combination of don and 烏 karasu (crow).