Blue Jays, with their vibrant blue feathers and bold personality, are one of the most common backyard birds in the eastern United States. Brash and flashy, Blue Jays are common in woods, parks and yards throughout the East. Jays are one of the larger birds you will see at your feeders (11 inches long with a 16-inch wingspan), a long tail and prominent crest. Blue Jays have the additional colors of white, black and gray around their face and underbelly, which help distinguish them from the western Steller’s Jay.
In the wild, Blue Jays feed heavily on acorns, and other nuts and seeds as well as bugs. At your feeders, Shelled Peanuts are a great option, as well as BerryWise® seed – a sweet and crunchy treat consisting of Hulled Sunflower, Black Oil Sunflower, Peanuts, Papaya, Raisins and Juniper Berries. Insect Treasure suet is a great choice as well, full of protein and delectable insect morsels which jays love.
Blue Jays will regularly visit backyard feeders. Wild Bird Center’s Platform feeders (in various sizes) are a great choice for this bigger bird as they may have trouble perching at a traditional tube feeder. Our Peanut Feeder, which allows Jays to cling while eating, is another great option. For suet or seed cakes, Wild Bird Center’s Suet Cake and In-Shell Peanut feeder allows for either/or depending on your preference.
Much like the Steller’s Jay, Blue Jays are monogamous birds. Their nests are made up of sticks, twigs, bark, moss, grass and even artificial materials such as paper or string. Nests are positioned in the fork of a branch usually 5-20 feet off the ground and the eggs are light blue or green with light brown spots. Bird pairs may raise 1-3 broods per season depending on available food and regional climate.
Did You Know?
Blue Jay’s affection for acorns is responsible for helping spread oak trees after the last glacial period.