Monday, September 29, 2014

Gray Jay

 A bird in the hand is worth...

Saturday my husband and I visited Algonquin Provincial Park with birder/photographer friend Paul to enjoy the fall colour and, of course, to take photos of wildlife there. The leaves were approaching peak and you would NOT believe the carloads and busloads of people who had the same idea we had...so wildlife was scarce. But people-friendly gray jays can be depended on to appear as long as you provide them with dried cranberries and/or peanuts.

 Thank you Mr. Nice Guy!  I love peanuts!

After a few minutes, three gray jays arrived to eat and take away goodies to their secret stashes, preparing for winter.

FYI: The Gray Jays (AKA Whiskey Jacks)  inside Algonquin PP wear bands because they are part of a research project. Gray Jays are amazing because they do NOT migrate but live through the winter eating the peanuts, dried cranberries and whatever else they have stashed away all summer, which they have hidden in places such as under tree bark. They must have incredible memories as they appear to find most of what they have hidden away!

Paul feeding and photographing a gray jay

Paul's photos can be seen HERE.

I am connecting to Stewart M's Wild Bird Wednesday HERE

69 comments:

Stefan Jansson said...

Great to see.

Andy said...

Neat shots. I am wonder why the Jay has band on each leg.

eileeninmd said...

Love the pretty Jay! It is neat you can feed the birds and photograph at the same time.. Have a happy day!

Revrunner said...

I can't imagine any bird in my area being that habituated to human contact.

Leora said...

What a beautiful bird - what great photos.

Mersad said...

LOVE the behind the scenes shot.

Mersad
Mersad Donko Photography

Roan said...

I can't believe they will eat from your hands. WOW. Handsome fella!

Jo said...

Beautiful shots. I see your husband is a dab hand at photography as well! Like Andy, I also wondered why the Jay sported two bands? Greetings. Jo

Judy said...

I have seen chickadees feed from your hand, but nothing larger! Cool images!

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Bummer on all the tourists, but you got gorgeous jay photos!

William Kendall said...

The banded birds are, if I recall correctly, part of an ongoing study.

I've always liked gray jays. They have real character, and they're quite curious about you.

Snap said...

How lovely ... I'm used the blue jays I see around here ... my first gray jay! And to feed off a hand..... wow!

Sandra said...

oh wow on the jay on the hand.. i would love to do that, of course i could not hold my hand out and the camera steady like he is, but i could hold one or the other. such a sweet bird

DeniseinVA said...

How marvelous that the jays eat out of the hand. Great photos!

see you there! said...

Those jays are pretty tame. Makes for great shots.

Darla

Debbie said...

i have done this and it is sooo exciting!! great captures!!

TexWisGirl said...

what a gorgeous little bird!!! store up, little one!

ladyfi said...

Wow - fabulous shots.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

He's a cute little bird EG.. It never ceases to amaze me just how clever birds are.. Going over now to take a peek at your husbands shots.

Linda W. said...

It's fun when birds are so tame they'll eat right out of your hand. Nice photos!

RedPat said...

These are great shots, EG!

Montanagirl said...

I saw my first Gray Jays in Alaska (where our daughter lives). We don't get them here. Nice post and photos!

Halcyon said...

Love your first shot. Pretty amazing that Paul can feed and take pictures at the same time. :)

Felicia said...

these are great images. how neat this must be to have the bird sit on your hand.

Lily Hydrangea said...

Amazing! I love our feathered friends.

Sylvia K said...

Oh, I love these birds and the photos are terrific!! How fun to have them eat out of your hand!! What a great day it had to have been!! Thanks so much for sharing the fun and the beauty!!! Perfect way to start my day!!

Ginny said...

Oh my gosh, your pictures are divine! And it is no easy task to feed a bird out of your hand and snap with the other hand. How is he able to do that with a big heavy camera? It really paid off though because the shot is wondrous and perfect. The perspective of the first shot is great, too. In the second shot, you can see he is storing them in his cheeks. How did I miss your rusted car below?? It would make a great huge planter!

Ginny said...

P.S. The greens and yellows around this rusted car actually make the whole scene very pretty. I don't think I have ever seen anything so badly rusted out!

Stephanie said...

Wow! Love that last shot!

Pamela Gordon said...

Amazing photos today. These grey jays are so tame.

Lisa Gordon said...

What sweet little birds, and they seem very tame.

These are really wonderful images.

Hannah said...

Amazing photo taken at arm's length! I once camped where Chickadees would eat nuts out of my hand. They are lighter than the Gray Jays. Paul did great with having one arm stretched out, very sharp. The 2 bands on the legs are funny. I used to see them in Colorado.

Sharon Wagner said...

You got some great shots! He's a cutie.

Ela said...

Wow ! What adorable little bird ! Amazing shots !

Beth, ...".E." Lizard Breath Speaks said...

what a beauty. love his coloring. new to me. ( :

happy week!

Our photos said...

Wow, amazing photos !

diane b said...

He is an interesting little bird. Storing his food for winter. He must have good downy feathers to keep him warm in the cold Canadian winter. The photos are great with the golden light.

Jane Hards Photography said...

These are fantastic

Vanessa Morgan said...

These photographs are amazing.

Carver said...

I didn't realize there were gray jays. They are very attractive. I get lots of blue jays but no gray jays.

Lois said...

Wow! I have never seen a Gray Jay before. Beautiful shots!

Jennifer A. Jilks said...

It's a busy time up there, that's what I've heard from friends. Great photos, though! Thanks for sharing them!

Randy said...

Wow, that is amazing.

Ruth Hiebert said...

Oh wow! That is so special.

Photo Cache said...

Oh my goodness, that birdie is so friendly and trusting.

Barbara Wójcik said...

Beautiful bird - super photos.

Krishna/കൃഷ്ണ said...

Wow! beautiful...

thanks

orchid Miyako said...

Wow; people-friendly gray jay♡♡♡ How great to see the wild birds to eat and take away foods from human's hand directly. Amazing pictures and great guy your friend Paul is(^_^)v 

Sending Lots of Love and Hugs from Japan to my Dear friend in America, xoxo Miyako*

Stewart M said...

Great post - and what a great looking bird.

I often wonder how much the bird feeding habits of people are affecting the biology of birds. They over winter in places they they never did before, and the weak pass trough a winter that would have claimed them in the past.

Nice post.

Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

Chandra said...

What a beauty. I am happy to learn about these guys.

Peace :)

Gunilla Bäck said...

Beautiful photos! How cool to have them eat from your hand.

Margaret Adamson said...

never seen or heard of a Grey Jay but it was wonderful that they were quite tame to come to the hand.

Christian Weiß said...

An impressive situation and a beautiful bird.

A Quiet Corner said...

A large bird looking at your friend's hand and the other pix which are awesome!...:)JP

Adam Jones said...

What a smart looking bird and some brilliant pictures.

HOOTIN ANNI said...

Spectacular!! Love its eyes!!

Alexa T said...

Such pretty bird... Have a sunny week!

Gail Dixon said...

Wow, wow, wow. These are sensational. I've never seen the Gray Jay. I've only seen the Scrub and Western. And the regular Blue of course. Anyway, gorgeous!

Rose said...

Oh, me oh my....would love to have a bird eat from my hand! He is so pretty...the jay, not the photographer...LOL

Small City Scenes said...

Love the Gray Jay. Like a camp robber but so cute. MB

Karen said...

How cool EG. I have never seen one. Thanks for sharing these fantastic photos!

thewovenspoke said...

Awesome post, I see Stellar Jays all the time at work , but no camera or time to take photos :(

Cloudia said...

Dear!

kelley jensen said...

what an amazing experience. I can't believe they eat out of your hand.

NatureFootstep said...

a cool experience. :)

bailey-road.com said...

The Gray Jay is a beautiful bird.

Arija said...

The Jays in parks in Canada are so trusting, very adapted to handouts, even so, it is always a thill to have a bird come to hand.

janiceadcock said...

Thanks for sharing these wonderful photos and captures.

Mary Cromer said...

HOW MARVELOUS!!!

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East Gwillimbury is a rural town less than an hour north of Toronto, Canada's largest city. My family calls me CameraGirl because I take my camera with me wherever I go.