Date: 10/10/17 7:40 pm
From: Robert O'Brien <baro...>
Subject: [obol] western Woodhouse's Scrub-Jay
But not in Oregon.
My California brother had visited Caruther's Canyon in the Death Valley
National Preserve
about 20 years ago and had noticed the Jays were 'different'. Different
calls, shyer.
So, last January we decided to check them out. Subsequently they were
split.
(I wish they would split them at the hyphen as well; and delete the 's
while they are at it).

So we combined a trip for desert wildflowers with a scrub-jay-foray in
April. This dry, beautiful, rocky
canyon is characterized by several oaks and the interesting & unique
Single-leaf Pinyon Pine.

Here's what we found. They do indeed sound differently and are much shyer
than their western cousins.
We saw no evidence they hung out around the campers and their potential
handouts or scraps;
and they were not easy to photograph. We saw several pairs flying across
the flat Pygmy Joshua Tree desert
on our way to the canyon and their 'azure' blue coloration appeared quite
different than the coastal jays.
(Actually, I have no idea what azure means in this context but the color
was striking, perhaps 'softer' in bright sunlight.)

Still they are absolutely not lacking in personality.

Bob OBrien

 
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