General Question

syz's avatar

What has happened to the Blue Jays?

Asked by syz (33240 points ) January 26th, 2010

When I was a kid, blue jays were a regular occurrence – obnoxious and bold, but undeniably beautiful. Now, I have a sighting less than once a year. Have they been decimated by a virus, or is it just my area? Do you have plentiful jays? Has anyone seen any population studies?

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21 Answers

john65pennington's avatar

Blue Jays in Tennessee are flourishing. each morning, i feed at least 6 with birdseed.

CaptainHarley's avatar

There are some Jays here in Texas. They dive-bomb the nighborhood cats! : )

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I see them almost everyday on my walks.I do see more in the winter where I am at.I think they are partial migrators.They also come to my feeder.Yes,they are beautiful!Try putting a suet feeder out or sunflower seeds .Maybe you will see some :)

janbb's avatar

I’ve got one at my feeder (NJ) regulalry.

BoBo1946's avatar

@syz in the winter only, always feed the birds…saw several yesterday, but you are correct…now, that i think about it as there were lots of blue jays when i was growing up, not now. mean birds…loll..they always run off the little birds!

Cruiser's avatar

I thought the same thing as they are one of my favorites birds to watch. for the last 20 years I can’t remember seeing any or so I thought until a lady friend told me to just look up. I did and they and many other wonderful bird species were and are there. All I needed to do was get out and look up! Saw a whole flock of Goldfinches in the woods last weekend…never saw that before because I never looked for that before!

BoBo1946's avatar

@john65pennington hey John, what happened to the question about the oddometer?

jonsblond's avatar

We have woods behind our house here in central Illinois and we see them almost daily. Sometimes I’ll sit in my daughter’s room that looks out into the backyard just so I can watch them.

ubersiren's avatar

That’s funny, because growing up I never saw blue jays. But now, at my house, they’re everywhere! The tree right outside my living room window gets them a lot. They’re so pretty. I’m in Maryland.

birdland33's avatar

Pat Gillick quit to become GM of the Baltimore Orioles, then Seattle Mariners, the Philadelphia Phillies. Since he left the Blue Jays they have not been the same as they were when they won back to back World Series titles in 1992 and 1993.

janbb's avatar

They do their spring training in my Florida town so they should be arriving soon. :-)

liminal's avatar

According to the field guide What Bird: “The Blue Jay has a very large range, extending to around 6,700,000 square kilometers. It prefers a boreal temperate, subtropical, tropical forest ecosystem and is native to North America, Saint Pierre, and Miquelon. The global population of the Blue Jay is estimated to be 22,000,000 birds and evidence indicates that the population is on the rise…” Yay!

syz's avatar

Wow, that makes me feel much better. I guess I’m just not in a jay-favorable area. Thanks, guys!

tekn0lust's avatar

They are going underground with the crows planning their next move.
http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/joshua_klein_on_the_intelligence_of_crows.html

erichw1504's avatar

Well, with more losses than wins last season; it’s no wonder you didn’t hear much about them. There’s always next season.

Zen_Again's avatar

LOL @erichw1504 ‘s answer.

Harp's avatar

We lost most of ours with the wave of West Nile Virus that swept through here a few years back. West Nile hit crows especially hard, and jays are closely related. Both are beginning to make a comeback, but are still not anywhere near their old levels. With the disappearance of the crows, the rabbit population exploded. They’re receding a bit with the reestablishment of the crows.

wildpotato's avatar

I know what you mean, syz – I haven’t seen a jay in years, now. I’ve really been wondering about the magpies, too. I used to see giant flocks of them growing up in Denver – now I see maybe 2 or 3 a year. It’s got me worried. Maybe it’s the West Nile thing for them, too.

ibstubro's avatar

Update:
It is still snowing with at least 6” new fall, and I just spotted a robin in my back yard! Poor bird.

ibstubro's avatar

Followed by a blue jay!

(My jay population is seasonal, and I was trying to post to a nearly duplicate question of my own.)

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