Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pinyon Jays...

...are social creatures. Not only do the birds flock together, but they are colonial nesters, communal feeders of their young and have little regard for territorial interactions with their neighbors. Highly nomadic, I see flocks of p-jays in the southern part of Bend where I live, but not regularly. Sometimes they are in the big ponderosa pines by the Bend Country Club, other times over by the trees near the South End Blockbuster. Today, they were over my yard.

A flock of over 50 birds, noisily flew past our house. Fortunately, I was outside loading the car with books bound for the library. This tight-knit flock was the first ones I had observed this winter, although some folks report them as more regulars at their homes east of Bend.

Formerly known as blue crows or Maximilian's jays, flocks with over 500 individuals have been reported in the Cabin Lake area, southeast of Bend. Those birds were probably as noisy as the Twelfth Man in the Seahawk's Qwest Stadium.

So where have these nomads been all winter? Hard to say, since I haven't seen many postings for them on COBOL. With this winter's deep snows, maybe they have spent time farther east in areas less frequented by birders. Who snows?

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