California Scrub-Jays are medium-sized birds of the crow and jay family. They are found along the western coast of the United States and down Baja California. Their preferred habitat is scrubland and woodlands. Until 2016 they were "lumped" with the Woodhouse's Scrub-Jay as the species Western Scrub-Jay.
California Scrub-Jays feed on fruit and seeds during the summer, switching to a diet of mostly nuts and seeds in other parts of the year. They are especially known for eating acorns, hammering at the hard nuts with their bills to get the nutmeat inside.
California Scrub-Jays are known to exploit deer parasites. The birds will stand on the backs of mule deer and eat ticks and other insects on the deer in a mutually beneficial relationship.
Bonanza Bird #6: The Western Scrub-Jay
ALERT: The Western Scrub-Jay was split into the California Scrub-Jay and Woodhouse's Scrub-Jay. For 18 days we're adding a new Birdorable bird every day as part of our Birdorable Bonanza 2010. Today's bird ... more