~Arizona Birding Series-Mexican Jay

~Mexican Jay, Madera Canyon-December 2020

This Jay was a new bird for me. Number 398.

Note the pale-color at the base of the bill.

The Mexican jay formerly known as the gray-breasted jay is a New World jay native to the Sierra Madre Oriental, Sierra Madre Occidental, and Central Plateau of Mexico and parts of the southwestern United States.

In May 2011, the American Ornithologists’ Union voted to split the Mexican jay into two species, one retaining the common name Mexican jay and one called the Transvolcanic jay. The Mexican jay is a medium-sized jay with blue upperparts and pale gray underparts.

It resembles the Woodhouse’s scrub-jay but has an unstreaked throat and breast.

Western Scrub-Jay. Loveland, CO

The Mexican Jay feeds largely on acorns and pine nuts but includes many other plant and animal foods in its diet. It has a cooperative breeding system where the parents are assisted by other birds to raise their young. This is a common species with a wide range and the International Union for Conservation of Nature has rated its conservation status as being of “least concern”.

 

This photo was taken in Madera Canyon.

Looking toward the canyon.

Happy Birding wherever you are!

 

 

 

 

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