Most Popular Post

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Jump start

Blue jays sit in the trees and call to each other, that distinctive sound we’ve come to know and love. As people approach the bridge, the jays take up positions in the trees around it, watching for peanuts, their favourite treats.





They don’t bother with the tiny sunflower seeds, a favourite of the chickadees.


As peanuts placed by their loving admirers are set on the railing, the jays fly closer and land nearby, though wary of every move of the bystanders. When they feel it’s safe, each hops to pick up a treat.





 A quick escape is essential.


Each jumps before its wings engage, which we hadn’t noticed before. A quick vertical jump, 





as if each is on a trampoline instead of the hard railing. The feet show the effect of the downward push when the bird is in the air.


The blue jays are agile as each bird can land on the railing from all sides and angles 





and jump sideways if need be. 





The wings begin to unfurl as they push away from the rail.


The birds aren’t the only ones treated this day!


54 comments:

Debbie said...

awwww, this is a great story about the jays!! they do love their peanuts and all have the distinctive moves you described!! awesome captures, the pictures really tell the story!!

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

The third photo - of that little hop - is amazing. The kind of thing you don't notice with the naked eye.

Linda d said...

Happy SPRING! We have hummingbirds but, alas, I am not a photographer.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Very observant!

Joanne Noragon said...

You have changed my opinion of blue jays!

Barbara said...

I confess, I love to watch blue birds and Red Birds to. I miss having my bird feeders and all the little birds that used to come and visit me each day.

Tabor said...

Our blue jays sometimes mimic the call of the hawk so that they can get the song birds away from the feeders!

William Kendall said...

They're quite marvelous birds. Their cousins, the grey jays, are a treat to watch too.

bill burke said...

Wow, what fantastic photos Marie. Very observant eyes you have. Thanks for showing these little creature's magic moves.

Rhodesia said...

Such pretty birds. Lovely photos, Diane

Elephant's Child said...

Watching them and reading your post is most definitely a treat. A treat which keeps on giving. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Amazing that you caught a shot of the bird jumping before flying. That's fascinating.

DJan said...

How neat that you caught that jump! I'm going to get some peanuts and watch to see if our stellar's jays do it too. :-)

Mage said...

Just flat out delightful.

Mage said...

I go away for a week, and come home to these outstanding photographs.

Anvilcloud said...

I tried to get some jay pics a few years ago. The blighters were very fast.

Shammickite said...

Great pictures of the blue jays enjoying the peanuts, but lets face it, they are naughty birds, they steal eggs and eat baby birds out of other birds nests. Well, they have to eat I suppose!

Anonymous said...

Cute! I've gotten a few hop on my deck so I have been putting peanuts out on my planters on the deck. they are beautiful birds. (They are) Mean to other birds though! they also steal dog food! I have put dog food out for my dog in the past (my previous dog...because she liked to dump her food out to eat it on the ground instead of eating from the dog bowl) and they will swoop down and take the dog food one at a time. Andrea

Tomoko said...

Great captures,Marie.Peanuts must be so hard.....!

Cathy said...

Without sounding trite - you learn something every day. This was today's lesson for me. Thanks Marie!

jenny_o said...

Wow - what great shots of those take-offs! Amazing to see the flight captured in this way. I'll have to watch our bluejays more closely!

Jenn said...

I always liked BLue Jays, they aren't as common here I don't think, I rarely see them.

Marie Smith said...

Love the blue jays, Debbie.

Marie Smith said...

I was surprised by it, John.

Marie Smith said...

Lol. Perfect Linda.

Marie Smith said...

I love to watch them, Debra.

Marie Smith said...

I guess that’s good, Joanne?

Marie Smith said...

I remember you writing about the birds, Barbara.

Marie Smith said...

Those crafty blue jays!

Marie Smith said...

I haven’t seen gray jays here, William.

Marie Smith said...

They are fantastic creatures, Bill.

Marie Smith said...

Thank you, Diane.

Marie Smith said...

Thank you EC. I love birds as you do.

Marie Smith said...

I did not realize they did that, Mildred.

Marie Smith said...

I am not familiar with stellar’s jays, Jan.

Marie Smith said...

They are indeed, Mage.

Marie Smith said...

Thanks, Mage.

Marie Smith said...

Their movements are quick and jerky, AC.

Marie Smith said...

They rule the area where we see them, Shammi.

Marie Smith said...

They are opportunists, that’s for sure, Andrea.

Marie Smith said...

The shells are hard, Tomoko.

Marie Smith said...

You’re welcome, Cathy.

Marie Smith said...

I wouldn’t have believed if I’d not photographed it, Jenny.

Marie Smith said...

I’m not sure of their range, Jenn. They are common on the east coast for sure.

Silver in AZ said...

fabulous photos!

Catarina said...

I had never noticed. Too fast for me. Every year I see two blue jays and two cardinals. Hard to photograph.

Ginnie said...

What fabulous images to show-n-tell your "story," Marie!

Marie Smith said...

Thanks, SW.

Marie Smith said...

They are a photographic challenge, that’s for sure, Catarina.

Marie Smith said...

Thanks, Ginnie!

Marilyn @ MountainTopSpice said...

Amazing capture of the movement of the bluejays! We have stellar jays here, and they are fun to watch as well. They particularly like the suet I put out for the birds. Amazing how they jump off first before flying! Great shots!

Marie Smith said...

Thanks Marilyn. Their jumping surprised me too.

baili said...

Remarkable photos dear Marie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i LOVED this blue beauty which you captured Fantastically!

Marie Smith said...

Thank you, Baili.