Blue Jay Facts and Information
Introduction to Blue Jay
One of the most common birds in southern Canada and the east of the Rocky Mountains is the Blue Jay. It is one that offers plenty of sounds, gorgeous colors, and they are extremely popular both in the wild and as pets. They can range in shades of blue as well as in overall size. The location where they live and food resources affect their size when they are mature.
Blue Jay Description
The Blue Jay is a large sound bird. The tail is long and rounded. They are smaller than a Crow but larger than a Robin. They often have several shades of blue on their top and the feathers down the back. The beak is black and they have white or cream down the front and underneath the body. They tend to be about 9 to 12 inches long and offer a wingspan of 17 inches. They weigh only about 3 ounces. The females can be about 2 ounces in some regions.
Blue Jay Distribution
The forest is a common place for the Blue Jay. However, they will live just about anywhere that they can find enough food. They tend to be attracted to bird feeders and bird baths people offer in their backyards. They are found in North America and continue to increase their overall distribution. They create nests at the outer branches of trees that are about 10 feet above the ground.
Blue Jay Behavior
The Blue Jay is a very noisy bird and that is something that many people enjoy hearing. They can also copy the sounds of Hawks and other types of birds as well. They are very curious and intelligent creatures. During the early winter months they start a migration period so that they can find food and shelter. They can migrate in large flocks of 250.
What is very fascinating is that not all Blue Jays will go South for the winter. Some do one year but then choose not to the next. They are able to survive in cooler temperatures as long as they can find food. There is still plenty of research in place that is trying to determine why some of them migrate annually and others are sporadic about it.
Blue Jay Feeding
There are many sources of food for the Blue Jay. This includes worms, acorns, nuts, and berries. In captivity they have been seen using pieces of paper to bring in food pellets that have fallen outside of their cage. This is a very interesting process and one that further proves they are intelligent and able to problem solve.
Sometimes they will consume the eggs of other birds in the wild. They will only do so when they are struggling to find enough food for them to survive on through their other resources.
Blue Jay Reproduction
The Blue Jay uses physical displays, dancing, and sounds to attract a mate. They often live in pairs and will create nests. The males will gather the materials and the females will build with it. The couples will usually stay as a pair their entire lives. Once there are eggs in the nest the female will do all the incubating. The male will go get her food and bring it back.
When the young arrive he will bring food for the female and for the young. When the young are a few weeks old the females will also start to bring back food for them. They young are curious and they will walk around in about a week to explore. They can fly when they are three weeks old and that is when they will leave the nest and make it on their own.