Bird Introduction-Blue Jay
The blue jay, with its bold coloration and even bolder personality, is one of the most common and familiar backyard birds in the eastern United States.
Scientific Name: Cyanocitta cristata
Common Name: Blue Jay, Jay
Lifespan: 6-8 years
Size: 11 inches
Weight: 2.5-4 ounces
Wingspan: 16 inches
Blue Jay Distribution and Habitat:
Blue Jays are common throughout the eastern and central United States and southern Canada from the Atlantic coast to the Rocky Mountains and eastern Texas. These birds are highly adaptable to different habitats and can be found in different types of forests as well as cities, parks, and suburban areas where mature trees are present.
Blue Jay in the backyard:
Blue jays are omnivorous birds and opportunistic feeders that may sample just about anything available. Nuts, berries, seeds, corn, carrion, insects, eggs, and even small animals such as lizards or baby birds may be part of their diet, and they easily switch to different food sources at different times of the year. Blue jays are also attracted to water and will frequently visit bird baths for drinking and bathing. Planting oak trees will also help provide a natural nut source to attract blue jays.
Blue Jay Conservation:
These jays are not considered threatened or endangered in any way, and their adaptability serves them well for adjusting to new habitats or habitat changes. Outdoor and feral cats can be a threat in urban and suburban areas.
Blue Jays in Culture:
Because these birds are lovely, distinctive, and intelligent, they are popular mascots for schools as well as sports teams. Also in some tales, the blue jay was credited with making the earth "when all de world was water" by bringing the first "grit" or "dirt." In other tales, the blue jay was temporarily conscripted as a servant of the Devil, and would not be seen on Friday as it was gathering twigs to furnish Hell's kindling and give fire to wicked men on Earth; relieved from duty on Saturday, its song for the day was abundant and joyous.