Blue Jay fun facts

Blue Jay portraitBlue Jays are one of my favorite birds.  Of course, being a birder, they are all on my favorite list, but childhood memories make them special.

Here are some fun facts:

Blue Jays:

  • Are easy to identify with no variations between male and female;
  • Have a loud harsh voice and can mimic sounds especially hawk calls;
  • Raise their head crest as a sign of aggression;
  • Eat insects, acorns and other nuts, and seeds;
  • Sometimes eat bird eggs and carrion;
  • Cache food for leaner months – usually in the ground;
  • Will come to platform feeders for sunflower seeds;
  • Are intelligent and adaptable;
  • Are from the same family as crows;
  • Jointly build a nest in a tree fork with twigs, roots, leaves, mud, etc.;
  • Have 1-2 broods with 2 to 7 bluish eggs with brown spots;
  • Incubate around 17 days;
  • Both feed young in nest for about 20 days;
  • Both continue to feed young 1-2 months after fledging;
  • May migrate in large flocks while others stay in the same location.

More information can be found as: https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Blue_Jay/overview

Enjoy spotting these cool birds!

Greater White-fronted Geese

Great White-fronted geeseI am a lucky enough to live near the Biltmore Estate. Sure the house is beautiful, but I really like to walk the grounds. The gardens are well tended and I always find something to photograph and something I hadn’t seen before. Every visit is different.

I enjoy walking around the lagoon, a large pond with many Canada Geese, various ducks, a Great Blue Heron, a Green Heron, and recently I saw a new bird  – the Greater White-Fronted goose. In the photo you can see that they are smaller than the Canada goose and how they got their name.  They were likely on their way, as the following week I did not see them.