Date: 11/15/19 8:09 am
From: LARRY ARNOLD <larnold47...> [ible] <ible-noreply...>
Subject: Re: [IBLE] And Then There Were...Three

i love to speculate, crawl out on a limb, like what the hay, yada yada.....


// below

From: "<lcarrigan_55...> [ible]" <ible-noreply...>
To: "IBLE" <ible...>
Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 8:11:59 AM
Subject: [IBLE] And Then There Were...Three

Since sunrise this morning, I've been watching 3 Blue Jays coming in to feed on both whole corn kernels & black-oil sunflower seeds. Oftentimes, with all 3 present at once.

Given the reports this fall of Blue Jays, esp in E ID, I pulled my records. My only Steller's Jay sighting at our place along the Snake River was 10/8/2000, feeding in our dry overflow channel. First Blue Jay sighting was 5/16/2012 at the feeder. Then, last year, the one which overwintered, arrived on 10/21/2018 to the feeder. // three cheers for record keeping... =)

Makes for some interesting questions. Are we witnessing a fall irruption of Blue Jays? // could be, but... Or, do we have a front row seat to observing the range expansion of Blue Jays? // my vote is here Is providing a seed source through feeders aiding a range expansion? // maybe one of several factors? Would be interested in others' thoughts. Probably too early to draw firm conclusions, but interesting, nonetheless. // every few yrs in W Colorado we'd experience an "outbreak" of one or two BLJAs, nothing ever like this...!! and recently, for example, I see no ebird reports in what I consider WCO, i.e., west of the Continental Divide.. .... great questions, Brian =)

My 3rd generation farmer buddy tells me his mom, who was a hobby birder used to see the occasional Blue Jay years ago, at the family homestead, a mile directly west of me. And, as an aside, until Starlings showed, Mt Bluebirds would nest all through this area...even in their mailbox once! The mailman had them nail a box up nearby, so as not to disturb the bluebirds. That would have been in the 1960's. A lot has changed since then.

Brian Carrigan

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