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Western Scrub-jay

Western Scrub-jay
Photo Information
Copyright: Tom Peak (tkp1165) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 156 W: 12 N: 595] (3876)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-12-01
Categories: Birds
Camera: Nikon D 300, Sigma 50-500mm f4-6.3 DG EX APO HSM
Exposure: f/10.0, 1/400 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): CeltickRanger's favorite Bird photos -5- [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2009-12-03 17:06
Viewed: 2952
Points: 8
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The Western Scrub-jay also known as California Jay or Long-tailed Jay is a species of scrub-jay native to western North America, ranging from southern Washington to central Texas and central Mexico. In recent years, it has expanded its range into the Puget Sound region of Washington. The Santa Cruz or Island Scrub-jay (Aphelocoma insularis), found only on Santa Cruz Island, and the Florida Scrub-jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens), a Floridan endemic, are its closest relatives. The Western Scrub-jay is nonmigratory and can be found in urban areas, where it can become tame and will come to bird feeders.

This species is 27-31 cm (11.5 in) long (including its tail), and weighs about 80g. Coastal Pacific birds tend to be brighter in coloration than those of the interior, but all are patterned in blue, white and gray, though none as uniform in color as the related Mexican Jay. Western Scrub-jays feed on small animals, eggs and young of other birds, insects, and (particularly in winter) nuts and berries. True to their name, Western Scrub-jays inhabit areas of low scrub, preferring pinyon-juniper forests, oak woods and sometimes mesquite bosques. They are known for hoarding and burying brightly colored objects.

Nests are built low in trees or bushes, 1m to 10m above the ground, primarily by the female while the male guards her efforts. The nests are sturdy, with an outside diameter of 33cm to 58cm, constructed on a platform of twigs with moss and dry grasses lined with fine roots and hair. Four to six eggs are laid from March through July with some regional variations. There are two common shell color variations: pale green background with irregular, olive-colored spots or markings, and pale grayish-white to green background with reddish-brown spots. The female incubates the eggs for about 16 days. The young leave the nest about 18 days after hatching.

The Western Scrub-jay is one of the species whose populations are being adversely affected by the West Nile Virus, particularly in California's Central Valley.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Argus, CeltickRanger, roges, tuslaw has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2009-12-04 0:38]

Hello Tom
Excellent details, natural colors and nice composition. I like it.

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2009-12-04 3:20]

Hello Tom,
A fine portrait of a the Western Scrub Jay, taken from a nice POV with excellent sharpness, lighting and colors. Though the twig BG is busy it is well seen and I like the composition with is lichen-covered perch.
Thanks and regards,

hello Tom

excellent and beautiful photo of the Western Scrub-jay,
shot with very fine POV and framing, superbly focused
with great sharpness and details of its plumage,
the catch-light render the photo more beautiful, TFS


  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2009-12-05 18:13]

Hello Tom,
The detail and colors in this shot are exceptional. The plumage of the Jay is shown very well under great lighting and with just the right exposure. Love the catch light in it's eye. Super work!!

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