Cyanocitta cristata, the Blue Jay

Blue Jay in Winter

Blue Jay in Winter, photo by AcrylicArtist

The UM Animal Diversity Web entry for Cyanocitta cristata blue jay says (in part):

Blue jays are bright blue on top and whitish gray on the belly and chin. They have a gray-blue, feather crested head, which they can raise and lower. The feathers on their wings and tails are bright blue with white and black bands. Blue jays also have a collar of black feathers across the throat and continuing around the head. Their bills, legs, feet, and eyes are black. Males are just a little larger, on average, than females.

…Blue jays are very aggressive and noisy birds,driving other birds away from food sources and their territories. In the winter, Blue jays hide far more food than they can eat, perhaps to remove food from their territories to discourage intruders. They are also partially migratory, and in the fall they can be seen traveling in flocks of more than a hundred birds.

…Blue jays are omnivorous. They feed on fruits, nuts, seeds, insects, mice, frogs, and will rob other nests for small songbirds and bird eggs. To eat nuts, blue jays hold them with their feet and then crack the shell with their bill. Blue jays in captivity have been known to fashion tools in order to get at foods. Blue jays will also steal foods from other birds by frightening them into dropping what they have. They cache foods, such as seeds, for later use.

Read on for much more (including photos)  and don’t miss a previous feature, Things you may not know about Blue Jays.

Check this out background bigtacular and see more in Rodney’s Animals slideshow.

Many more Michigan birds on Michigan in Pictures.

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