Camp Robber: The Gray Jay

What a neat experience to have one of these little birds eat from you hand. Just parking in the parking lot at Ski Bowl provided this experience you might want to share with your children. They were after peanuts with shells broken open.


The Gray Jay, aka Camp Robber (photo by the author)

If you want to get to know the Gray Jay, plan a picnic in one of Summit County’s high forests.  Find a suitable spot, open your lunch bag, sit back and relax.  You won’t have to wait long, since they don’t call this bird the ‘Camp Robber’ for nothing.  In fact, if you’re willing to share, bold Gray Jays will perch on your hand to snatch most anything offered.  Little of this confiscated food is eaten on the spot, though.  The jay will grab a morsel and immediately fly back into the trees.  It’s not that they’re antisocial; these year-round residents squirrel away lots of groceries to get them through the mountain winter.

Enjoyed both by summer visitors and winter skiers, Gray Jays are found in Summit County throughout the year.  Turning their noses up at wimpy migrants, these birds…

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About pe4CreativeScience

Teaching k-8 physical education at Creative Science School. This is a special focus school where children learn by doing. Previously I was at Lewis and my site is being updated. Follow me on Twitter at GymJumpRun.
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