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Bird Illustrations

Perching Birds

Blue Jay, Watercolor Painting


blue jay
Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata), watercolor sketch

About blue jays:
Blue jays are common to urban areas (among others) in the eastern and midwestern U.S. They form monogamous bonds which often last until one of the pair dies. Average lifespan is about seven years. They eat insects, nuts, fruit, seeds, and eggs of other birds. They especially like areas with oak trees and eat acorns. Blue jays bury a lot of acorns and other seeds, more than they can eat. Of their various calls, one sounds like that of the red-shouldered hawk, which they use to scare off other birds. Breeding is from March to July. Nests are built in evergreen trees and are 5 to 20 feet high.

Bluejays are oscine birds, or songbirds. "The vocal organ is developed in such a way as to produce various sound notes, commonly known as bird song." (Wikipedia)

Taxonomy:
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata (having a spinal chord)
Class: Aves (birds)
Order: Passeriformes (perching birds)
Family: Corvidae (oscine birds, songbirds)
Genus: Cyanocitta (jays including blue jay and stellar's jay)
Species: C. cristata

More about blue jays:
Animal Diversity Web
Missouri Department of Conservation

Bluejay Photographs:

Bluejay


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