After a recent heavy snow, food was scarce and our feeder was the only game in town. The mornings are filled with blue jays, up to nine at a time sharing the feeder! I snapped this shot from my kitchen window and am delighted with the results.
One jay in focus that has decided to throw its food (good for the little birds on the ground) while another jay is coming in for a landing. It never fails to surprise me how nature is never wasteful; one's thrown and discarded food quickly becomes another's meal.
Your photography is wonderful! Love seeing the blue jay coming in for a landing. I've been feeding the birds for many years and blue jays are one of my favorites, too. The one on the feeder is doing what's called "whisking" through the seeds to see if he can find something he'd like to eat. It looks like you've got millet and cracked corn, and the jays would really like to find some peanuts or black oil sunflower seeds, which are high in fat and help the birds survive in harsh weather. Actually, most birds love the black oil sunflower seeds and if you want cardinals coming regularly this is the seed to have ;-) I love that people are sharing and feeding the birds even in these tough times. God bless you for doing this!
Wonderful photo! :-)
I'm agreeing with BMD. Cardinals also like a type of thistle seed called Nyjer (Niger). We always used a combination of seeds including the cracked corn. Little ground-feeding doves are like chickens and love to scratch on the ground fo their food.
Feeding our wild birds is a year-around pleasure these days for all except those people living near enough to wild growth which provides sufficient seeds and varieties of dried berries etc to feed them even during the winter months. Good clean fresh water is most important of all for every wild bird year around.
Thanks for sharing a really great photo.
Fantastic photo! Thank you for sharing!
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A close friend made this bird house. It is frequented by this darling little Blue Jay.
By Robyn Fed from Tri-Cities, TN
I took this picture while fishing at Ft. Loudon Historical State Park in Vonore, TN. This little Blue Jay decided it was his snack time and took off with a piece of cubed cheese from our table.
I love the Blue Jays. Many people think they are bully birds or greedy, but on the contrary, they earn the right to eat first. They are the "sentinels" of the forest and watch out for everyone else.
The other birds are really glad to allow them to eat first even though once in a while we can see what appears to be small confrontations. Usually caused by an immature male bird of another type.
I once watched a female cardinal challenge a jay and the jay gave way. He allowed her to get food at the platform feeder ahead of him. I'm sure she must have told him that she had little ones waiting for her to bring their food. He stepped aside and she took the food, flew away and then he ate.
I've seen jays do some very clever tricks too like hiding food behind cans etc...then fill up their beaks again, leave with what was in their beaks and wait until all the food was gone before going to that he'd hidden. Just amazing. If you put out a bunch of peanuts in the shells, they will choose the peanut with the most peanuts in it. Every time, they'll choose the biggest peanut and they'll put one down and take another if they see one that's larger or has three peanuts instead of two.
They can be pretty fierce when necessary, and take their jobs of guarding and watching very seriously. They can be so comical too. A great all-around beautiful little bird.
Excellent picture. Thank you for sharing.
What a cute picture! :-) (06/16/2010)
I like them. I agree with all Julia has said. (08/13/2010)