Description of the Blue Jay

BREEDING MALE

Size:
Length: 11 inches
Wing span: 16 inches


Female

Same as male.

Seasonal change in appearance

None.

Juvenile

Juveniles are similar to adults.

Habitat

Blue Jays inhabit oak and pine woodlands, towns, and parks.

Diet

Blue Jays eat insects, nuts, fruits, seeds, eggs, frogs, and carrion.

Blue Jays will rarely kill adult birds.

Behavior

Blue Jays forage both in trees and shrubs and on the ground.

They will mob hawks and owls that enter the Blue Jay's territory.

Range

Blue Jays are resident across much of the eastern U.S. and southern Canada. The population appears to be increasing.

Fun Facts

Blue Jays are typically loud and conspicuous, though when nesting they become much more secretive.

Blue Jays do not defend territories, but pairs will defend their nest site from other individuals.

Vocalizations

Calls include a harsh “jaaay” scream, but many other vocalizations are made. Well known for mimicking Red-shouldered and Red-Tailed Hawks.

Click here to order a Blue Jay ring tone.

Learn to identify bird songs with the Stokes Eastern or Western Field Guide to Bird Songs on CD.

Attracting

Peanuts, either shelled or in the shell, are a favorite of Blue Jays.

Nesting

The Blue Jay’s nest is a cup of twigs, weeds, grass, bark fibers, and other materials, and is typically placed in a crotch or fork of a tree.

Number: 4-5 eggs

Color: greenish or blue in color with darker markings.

Incubation and fledging
The young hatch at about 16-18 days.

Young leave the nest (fledge) in another 17-21 days, though continuing to associate with the adults for some time.