Friday, February 3, 2012

The Baffling Behavior of Blue Jays


PhotobucketOn Wednesday afternoon, while walking to the mailbox, I encountered a most unusual spectacle.  The weather was warm and the day sunny so I decided to saunter down the road and check out the southern section of the pond.  Soon my attention was drawn to a huge flock of chattering avians roosting in the trees on the Pine Point Park side of the water. While I was too far away to positively identify the species I would guess they were Pine Siskins, based on their calls, size, shape and recognizable quick darting movements, plus the pond’s history of attracting large flocks during the winter.

PhotobucketStudying  their behavior, I soon noticed that smaller batches of the birds were attempting to cross over to  Bon Bon Pond only to be turned back by four screaming, agitated Blue Jays. This event left me puzzled as I’ve rarely witnessed territorial and/or aggressive behavior among my birds, based, I believe, on a plentiful and easy-to-access food supply.

PhotobucketApparently, some line had been crossed in the bird world but it doesn’t make much sense as the smaller birds eat nyjer thistle and sunflower hearts while the Jays enjoy peanuts, corn and black oil sunflower seeds.  In fact, my Jays rarely eat from the feeders, preferring instead to eat from the ground.  ???

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