Posted by: atowhee | October 29, 2020


There is a quartet of scrub-jays who frequent our garden. They use our feeders, our shrubs, our trees* (their trees, really, as they planted many of the volunteers like oak and hazelnut), bird baths, roof, suspended power lines, fence and generosity. The relish the peanut orgies we share.

I had noticed that one seemed a bit paler in flight. Then I got this image without realizing its significance at the time:

A scrub-jay with white tail feathers copied from a junco design template. Not in flight this scrubber looks like all his cohort.

So today I baited them with peanuts. Junco Jay (“J J” J now call him or her) is not the dominant bird. He/she is often driven from the driveway., other times he/she relishes singularity and has the peanut flock all alone:

So will check to see what I can find on leucistic scrub-jays, probably like most songbirds, keep looking and one will turn up. I’ve seen leucism in many species from Surfbird to California Towhee, Fox Sparrow to American Robin, Song Sparrow to Brewer’s Blackbird (top half was white!), red-tail to Bald Eagle.

Click here for good general discussion of leucism in birds.

*Read great book on gardening–The Landscaping Ideas of Jays

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