Enjoying Blue Jays More


Many folks have developed a less than appreciative view of Blue Jays. Often thought of as “backyard bullies” and “nest robbers” these extremely intelligent members of the Corvidae family which includes Crows, Ravens and Magpies, has been unjustly stereotyped. Other more desirable birds such as the House Wren can cause as much damage spearing eggs and ejecting them from the nest of other birds. Even picking up the nestlings of another bird and dropping them to the ground for no apparent reason.  Cow Birds destroy eggs and nestlings of countless birds each year parasitizing on their nests. And the introduced House Sparrow in shear numbers is aggressive enough that they have reduced the populations of many cavity nesting birds using brutal tactics as does the European Starling. So maybe Blue Jays aren’t so bad after all. If you take the time to study them you’ll agree they are remarkably beautiful. You’ll identify individual birds by their behavior.

Jays have been know to create tools. Only three species of animals on the planet create tools to use. Humans, Chimpanzees, and birds. For those concerned about hawks, Jays will warn everyone, humans and birds alike, if a predator is stalking where other birds congregate such as near bird feeders. Jays are referred to as the “Harvester Bird” due to the number of trees that sprout from unwanted seeds they have cached away. Plus they are just plain fun to watch. Maybe its time to rethink how we look at Blue Jays and enjoy them and the position they hold in the bird kingdom.

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