Was talking with someone about the Gray Jays at Victory and thought I
would share with the group. A bit long so delete if you wish.
I was up at Victory yesterday. Skied down the pipeline to check on some
birds. Most are too busy nesting to come out and see me. They should be
egg laying within the week. 18 day incubation, 23 days nestling,
fledging in first week of May or soon thereafter. I do not see many of
the GJ now till May, but it gives me a chance to see who is with whom.
Sort of Oscar night at Victory.
On the way back, a GJ started "wooting" a short monotone whistle, almost
as if to get my attention. I turned and it glided in, hopped up on my
ski tip about 3' and fed on some muffin I put out for it. I was pleased
to see who it was. It was 942-26090, a male GJ I banded as an adult on
1 Oct 1996. So that bird is probably 12 years old. A few minutes
later, its lady friend came in. The two have been together 3 April 2001
at least. That is when I banded her. I have a student looking at pair
bonds and their duration. But all evidence to date is that the GJ will
remain together as long as both are alive.
Was enveloped by a flock of Chickadees. Hard to count but there were in
excess of 17. Not sure what that large flock was about. Most of the
day I saw pairs of chickadees.
Blue Jays in large flocks, very noisy, very active. A lot of chasing
going on. Stokes shares that we actually know very little about this
conspicuous colorful bird. As I watched their goings and comings, I did
observe courtship feeding on two occasions.
Hairy and Black-backed Woodpeckers observed drumming yesterday.
Male Purple Finch atop trees singing. Lots of finches, Goldfinch,
Purple Finch, a few siskins, and lots of White-winged Crossbills.
Caught a quick peek at a male Red Crossbill. Same location as I saw it
a few weeks ago. About 1/2 mile north of Bog Brook parking lot. You
come off the sedge meadow, around a bend and it seems to be hanging out
where the scattered Balsam start.