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  • Writer's pictureCarswell King

The Handsome Steller's Jay

These beautiful bluebirds are a relatively common sight in my backyard but it's

aways a thrill to see one. Unlike the tropics, most of our birdlife on the west coast of Canada sport plumage that blends in rather than stands out. So our Coastal Steller's Jay with their bright turquoise-blue feathers and attractive charcoal-black coloured heads are worth watching out for.

Most often you'll see them on the hunt for insects, seeds, berries and even garbage – they can be aggressive with other birds and they're not shy about taking a handout! Peanuts and sunflower seeds seem to be a favourite

They acquired their name from a Russian naturalist, Georg Steller, who first recorded them in 1741 after observing them in Alaska.

The Steller's Jay is the provincial bird of British Columbia. We're fortunate that our west coast environment provides a healthy habitat for these smart and handsome birds and that they're able to maintain a steady population.

In this illustration, my feathery Steller's Jay sits on his Japanese Cherry Blossom perch observing the activity below. Is there a handout in the offering?

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