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Blue Jay - Cyanocitta cristata

Blue Jay


 Kingdom: Animalia
 Phylum: Chordata
 Class: Aves
 Order: Passeriformes
 Family: Corvidae
 Genus: Cyanocitta
ICUN Redlist - World Status: Least Concern Least Concern


Blue JayThe blue jay is between 9 and 12 inches in length. It is bright blue on top and white to gray on its throat, chest, and belly. It has a gray-blue crest on its head and black and white bars on its wings and tail. Its bill, legs, and feet are black. It also has a black "necklace" on its lower throat.


mapThe blue jay is found in southern Canada and in the United States, east of the Rocky Mountains. The blue jay is migratory and northern populations may move south in the winter.






The blue jay is common in deciduous forests. It is also found in residential areas.


Blue JayThe blue jay is omnivorous. It eats fruits, acorns, seeds, nuts, insects, mice, and frogs. Sometimes a blue jay raids a nest for eggs and young birds. When a blue jay eats nuts, it holds the nut with its feet and cracks it open with its bill. The blue jay is a seed spreader. It often buries food to eat later. Some seeds and nuts are never recovered and grow into trees and other plants! 

Life Cycle

Blue JayThe female blue jay lays four to six eggs in a nest made of sticks and twigs and lined with grass. Nests are made in trees and shrubs. The female incubates the eggs, although sometimes the male helps. The eggs incubate for about 17 days. Both parents bring the chicks food.


The blue jay is very aggressive and territorial. Groups of blue jays often attack intruders and predators. They often drive other birds away from bird feeders. The blue jay is also very vocal. It makes a number of different calls including its distinctive "jay- jay."  It also growls, whistles, and chatters.

Audio Credit: xeno-canto.org Chris Parrish cc logo