Blue Jays are another common and easily recognizable bird in our area. With their large crests and blue, white and black markings they definitely stand out. Another give away that Blue Jays are in the area is by their distinct call. Blue jays can be found almost anywhere from forest edges to urban parks and backyards. One of their favorite native foods is acorns so they can always be found where oak trees are present.
If your backyard is lacking Blue Jays make sure you are offering peanuts at your feeders. Whether it is a specific feeder just for peanuts or as part of a mix, Blue Jays will always go for the peanuts first. Peanuts in the shell or peanut halves will attract Jays, and various feeders are available to present these seeds to them. Blue Jays tend to prefer a tray or hopper style feeder mounted on a pole rather than a hanging feeder, but my hanging cylinder feeder filled with peanut halves gets it’s fair share of Jays to it.
Blue Jays are known to mate for life and remain with their partner throughout the year, so it is likely you will have at least two visit your feeder. Families of Jays can be quite large with clutch sizes ranging from 2-7 eggs. I am fortunate to have a pair nest in a row of large spruce trees behind my house every year. On average I have 3-4 young along with both parents visiting my feeders each summer and into the winter months. Their beautiful plumage and loud calls are a delight to any yard.