photo by Phil Swanson
L 10 1/2″ (27 cm).
Song or calls:
Listen (NGPC audio)
High-pitched “caaa,” often quavering at end to resemble laughing “haa-a-a-a.”
Description: Sexes similar. Gray-blue overall, darkest on the head; blue throat streaked with white; no crest; long, slender bill; and a short tail. Immatures are paler, and grayer overall.
Behavior: Flight is direct, with rapid wingbeats.
Habitat: Found in pine forests where the soil is fairly dry, and the trees are small and scattered.
Where in Nebraska: Uncommon permanent resident of the Pine Ridge area. Vagrants seen in other parts of the state during the winter months.
Field Notes: Usually seen in large flocks, often numbering in the hundreds.
Fun Facts: Although omnivorous, the Pinyon Jay’s favorite food is pine seeds.