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CORVIDAE

The Corvidae family contains the crows, ravens, rooks, jackdaws, jays, magpies, treepies, choughs and nutcrackers. They are considered the most intelligent of the birds. They are medium to large in size, with strong feet and bills, and a single moult each year (most passerines moult twice). Most species have bristle-like feathers covering their nostrils. They are omnivores having a varied diet. Corvids are found worldwide except for the tip of South America and the polar ice caps. [abstracted from Wikipedia]


Jays and Allies

Order Passeriformes    Family Corvidae


Genus Aphelocoma
These jays live in open pine-oak forests, chaparral, and mixed evergreen forests.They have no crest. The top of the head, nape, and sides of the head are a rich deep blue. They are found in Mexico, western United States, western Central America. Also, the Florida Scrub-Jay is found in Florida.

Jay, Florida Scrub- Aphelocoma coerulescens Found: North America
The Florida Scrub-Jay has a blue head, nape, bib, wings, tail; whitish forehead, supercilium; grayish back, underparts; black bill, legs.
Image by: 1) Andromeda  2) Btrentler  3) Mwanner 


Jay, Island Scrub-  Aphelocoma insularis  Found: North America (Santa Cruz Island, California)
The Island Scrub Jay has a very  large biil because part of its diet is acorns.
Similar to: Western Scrub Jay. Their ranges do not overlap.
Image by: Kevin Pietrzak


Jay, Mexican   Aphelocoma wollweberi   Found: North America
The Mexican Jay has a blue head, wings, tail; blue-gray mantle; pale gray underparts. From Mexico its range reaches north to eastern Arizona, western New Mexico and western Texas. Its preferred habitat is pine-oak forest.
Similar to: Transvolcanic Jay. The Mexican Jay and Transvolcanic Jay were formerly consider subspecies in the same genus. The Transvolcanic Jay is found in the Transvolcanic Belt of central Mexico. The Mexican Jay is found in northen Mexico and southwestern USA.
Similar to: Western Scrub-Jay. The Mexican Jay is more uniform in color; Western Scrub-Jay has a blue necklace
Image by: 1)  Marcel Holyoak - Arizona  2) New Jersey Birds  3) Alan Vernon - Arizona  4)  Jon Hayes 
1) Juvenile


Jay, Transvolcanic  Aphelocoma ultramarina  Found: central Mexico
The Mexican Jay and Transvolcanic Jay were formerly consider subspecies in the same genus. The Transvolcanic Jay is found in the Transvolcanic Belt of central Mexico. The Mexican Jay is found in northen Mexico and southwestern USA.
Image by: 1, 2) Amy McAndrews - Veracruz
1) Juvenile


Jay, Unicolor
  Aphelocoma unicolor  Found: Mexico, Central America
The Unicolor Jay has dark blue plumage; black lores; long tail; heavy bill.
Image by: 1) Francesco Veronesi - Mexico   2) Sergey Yeliseev - Mexico  3) Amy McAndrews - Mexico


Jay, Western Scrub- Aphelocoma californica Found: North America
The Western Scrub-Jay has a blue head, wings, tail; gray-brown back; grayish underparts; whitish throat with blue necklace. It ranges from southern Washington to central Texas and central Mexico.
Similar to: Mexican Jay. The Mexican Jay is more uniform in color; Western Scrub-Jay has a blue necklace.
Image by:  1) Minette Layne - Seattle Washington  2, 3) Ted Grussing - Arizona 4, 5, 6,  7) Dick Daniels - California   8) Sandy Cole - California 



Genus Calocitta
The two mappie-jay species both have black sparce crests. They live in southern North America.

Jay, Black-throated Magpie-  Calocitta colliei  Found: Mexico
The Black-throated Magpie-Jay has blue upperparts; white underparts; black throat, head, crest, bill, legs; pale blue spot over eye; pale blue patch under eye.
Similar to: White-throated Magpie-Jay. They are know by their faces.
Image by: 1) Dick Daniels - National Aviary  2) Len Blumin


Jay White-throated Magpie-  Calocitta formosa  Found: Mexico, Central America
The White-throated Magpie-Jay has white face, underparts; blue upperparts, tail; black crest, legs; gray bill.
Similar to: Black-throated Magpie-Jay. They are know by their faces.
Image by: 1) Jerry Oldenettel  2, 3)  Dominic Sherony



Genus Cyanocitta
This genus contains the Blue Jay and Steller's Jay. They are both North American crested jays.

Jay, Blue Cyanocitta cristata   Found: North America
The Blue Jay has blue upperparts; off-white underparts; blue tail barred with black, black collar, eye-line. It has a crest which is raised or lowered depending on the mood.
Image by: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7. 8) Dick Daniels - North Carolina    3) Rich Leche
8) Blue Jay with Red-bellied Woodpecker


Jay, Steller's Cyanocitta stelleriFound: western North America
The Steller's Jay has blackish-brown head, neck; silvery-blue lower breast, belly; blue wings, tail, flanks.
Image by: 1, 2, 3) Alan D Wilson - British Columbia  4. 5) Dick Daniels - Seward, Alaska   6) Charlie Westerinen - central Sierra Nevada




Genus Cyanocorax
This genus contains several closely related species that primarily are found in wooded habitats of Mexico and Central and South America, with the Green Jay just barely entering the United States. The upperparts (except for the Green Jay) are primarily blue or purplish.

Jay, Azure  Cyanocorax caeruleus  Found: Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay
The Azure Jay has mainly blue plumage; black head, neck, upper-breast.
Image by: 1) Aaron Maizlish - Brazil  2) Vinivinizinho  3) Lotlhmoq


Jay, Azure-naped  Cyanocorax heilprini  Found: Brazil, Columbia, Venenzuela
The Azure-naped Jay has mainly dark purple-gray plumage; light blue crown, nape; blue malar; yellow eyes; white under-tail.
Image by: 1) Joseph Smit  2) Ian Davies - Columbia


Jay, Bushy-crested  Cyanocorax melanocyaneus  Found: Central America
The Bushy-crested Jay is found in El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua.
Image by: 1) John Gerrard Keulemans - Catalogue of the Birds in the British Museum  2)  Dominic Sherony


Jay, Cayenne  Cyanocorax cayanus  Found: South America
The Cayenne Jay has dark brownish-purple back; whitish rear crown, nap,; lower-breast, belly; black fore-crown, face, throat, upper-breast.
Image by: 1) Barloventomagico  2) EtienneLFR


Jay, Curl-crested  Cyanocorax cristatellus  Found: South America
The Curl-crested Jay has blackish back, head, neck; white underparts; black curl crest rising from just behind the bill.
Similar to: Plush-crested Jay. Crest of Curl-crested Jay emanates from just behind bill; crest of Plush-crested Jay extends behind the head. Plush-crested Jay has blue arc over eye.
Image by: 1, 2, 3) Dario Sanches - Brazil


Jay, Green Cyanocorax yncas  Found: North America (Texas), Central and South America
The Green Jay has green upperparts; yellow to green underparts; blue crown, nape; black bib continues up side of head.
Image by:   1) Dick Daniels - San Francisco Zoo  2) Juan Tello- Venezuela 3) Charlie Westerinen - Texas 4) Alan D Wilson - Texas


Jay, Plush-crested  Cyanocorax chrysops  Found: South America
The Plush-crested Jay has bluish-gray upperparts; black head; black plusy crest; black nape, bib; yellowish-white lower breast, belly; blue arc over eye.
Similar to: Curl-crested Jay. Crest of Curl-crested Jay emanates from just behind bill; crest of Plush-crested Jay extends behind the head. Plush-crested Jay has blue arc over eye.
Image by: 1)  David Monniaux Iguazú National Park (Argentina)  2) Sandy Cole - San Diego Zoo  3) Dario Sanches - Brazil  4) Dick Daniels - Miami Zoo


Jay, Purplish  Cyanocorax cyanomelas  Found: South America
The Purplish Jay has dull purple upperparts; black head, neck.
Image by: 1) J Quental - Brazil  2) Hector Bottai - Brazil  3) Dominic Sherony - Peru


Jay, Purplish-backed   Cyanocorax beecheii  Found: Mexico
The Purplish-backed Jay has deep blue to purple upperparts; black bill, head, neck, underparts; yellow eyes, legs.
Similar to: San Blas Jay. San Blas Jay has lighter upperparts than Purplish-backed Jay.
Image by: 1) Amy McAndrews  2) Cburnett


jay, San Blas  Cyanocorax sanblasianus  Found: Mexico
The San Blas Jay has blue upperparts; black head, nape, underparts.
Similar to: Purplish-backed Jay. San Blas Jay has lighter upperparts than Purplish-backed Jay.
Image by: 1, 2) Kurayba


Jay, Tufted  Cyanocorax dickeyi  Found: Mexico
The Tufted Jay has dark blue upperparts; dark blue top half of tail; white nape, underparts, bottom half of tail.
Image by: 1) Ron Knight  2, 3) Francesco Veronesi


Jay, Violaceous  Cyanocorax violaceus  Found: South America
The Violaceous Jay has dull violet upperparts; lighter nape; black throat, head; pale violet underparts.
Image by: 1) Joao Quental - Venezuela  2) Geoff Gallice


Jay, White-naped  Cyanocorax cyanopogon  Found: Brazil
The White-naped Jay has mainly brown upperparts; white nape, underparts; black head, throat, upper-breast.
Image by: 1) Nicolas Le Jeune  2) Shanthanu Bhardwaj


Jay, White-tailed  Cyanocorax mystacalis  Found: Ecuador and Peru
Image by: David Cook - Peru


Jay, Yucatan  Cyanocorax yucatanicus  Found: Belize, Guatemala, Mexico
The Yucatan Jay has blue upperparts; black head, nape, underparts;
Image by: 1) John Gerrard Keulemans  2) Tony Hisgett - Mexico  3) Scott Reader
2) Juveniles 3) Left: adult; right: juvenile



Genus Cyanolyca
All are largely blue and have a black mask. They also possess black bills and legs and are skulking birds. They are found in Central America and South America.

Jay, Azure-hooded  Cyanolyca cucullata  Found: Mexico, Central America
The Azure-hooded Jay has mainly dark blue plumage; black head with sky blue back of the head and neck. The blue patch can have a white border.
Image by: 1) Tim - Costa Rica  2) Hans Zwitzer - Costa Rica  3) David Rodriguez - Costa Rica


Jay, Beautiful  Cyanolyca pulchra  Found: Columbia, Ecuador
The Beautiful Jay has mainly dark blue plumage; black face, forehead; whitish crown.
Image by: 1) Michael Woodruff - Ecuador  2) Juan Lopez Ordonez  3) Luis Mejia


Jay, Black-collared  Cyanolyca armillata  Found: Columbia, Ecuador. Venezuela
The Black-collared Jay has mainly blue plumage; paler blue crown; black mask, collar.
Similar to: Turquoise Jay. The Turquoise Jay has a greener tinge than the Black-collared Jay and a narrower mask.
Image by: 1) John Gerrard Keulemans  2) Fleix Uribe - Columbia


Jay, Black-throated  Cyanolyca pumilo  Found: Mexico, Central America
The Black-throated Jay has mainly dark blue plumage; black face; narrow white upper border to the black face.
Image by: 1) Dominic Sherony - Guatemala


Jay, Dwarf  Cyanolyca nana  Found: Mexico
The Dwarf Jay is a small, dull blue jay. It also has a black mask on the face, and the throat is pale blue. Although it can be locally common, this jay has a small distribution in the mountains of southeastern Mexico
Image by: 1) Jerry Oldenettel - Oaxaca


Jay, Silver-throated  Cyanolyca argentigula  Found: Costa Rica, Panama
The Silver-throated Jay has mainly dark blue plumage; silvery throat patch, supercilium.
Image by: 1) John Gerrard Keulemans  2) Dominic Sherony - Costa Rica


Jay, Turquoise  Cyanolyca turcosa  Found: Columbia, Ecuador, Peru
The Turquoise Jay has mainly blue plumage; black face mask, collar
Similar to: Black-collared Jay. The Turquoise Jay has a greener tinge than the Black-collared Jay and a narrower mask.
Image by: 1) Ted Boniecki - Ecuador  2) David Cook - Ecuador


Jay, White-collared  Cyanolyca viridicyanus  Found: Bolivia, Peru
The White-collared Jay has mainly blue-green plumage; black face mask, under-tail; white forehead, collar.
Image by: 1) Henrik Gronvold  2) Claudio Timm


Jay, White-throated  Cyanolyca mirabilis  Found: Mexico
The White-throated Jay has mainly slate-blue plumage; mainly black head; white supercilium extending beyond ear-coverts; white throat.
Image by: 1) Ryan Shaw



Genus Garrulus

Jay, Black-headed  Garrulus lanceolatus  Found: Asia
Similar to: The Eurasian Jay has a black head; the Eurasian Jay does not have a black head.
Image by: 1) Allan Hopkins - India  2, 3) Panav Bhasin


Jay, Eurasian  Garrulus glandarius   Found: Europe, Asia, Africa
The Eurasian Jay has pinkish-gray to reddish-brown upperparts; white throat, rump; black tail, moustache stripe.
Similar to: The Black-headed Jay has a black head; the Eurasian Jay does not have a black head.
Image by:  1) Aviad Bublil - Israel   2, 3)_Luc Viatour  4) Cristiano Crolle - Palude Brabbia, Italy


Jay, Lidth's  Garrulus lidthi  Found: Japan
The Lidth's Jay has mainly  chestnut-purple plumage; velvety black head; purplish-blue nape and upper-back.
Image by: 1) MaterialScientist



Genus Gymnorhinus - 1 species

Jay, Pinyon  Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus  Found: Western North Amerca
The Pinyon Jay is bluish-gray with deeper head coloring; light throat; black bill, legs.
Image by: 1) Charle Westerinen near Cortez, Colorada   2, 3) Alan D Wilson - Near Fort Rock, Oregon



Genus  Nucifraga
The bills of nutcracker are specialized tools for extracting seeds from pine cones.

Nutcracker, Clark's  Nucifraga columbiana    Found: North America
Clark's Nutcracker has a gray body with black wings and tail; white rump; black biil, feet.
Similar to: Gray Jay. Clark's Nutcracker has black on wings; Gray Jay does not. Gray Jay has dark nape; Clark's Nutcracker has light colored nape.
Image by:  1) Alan D Wilson - Near Fort Rock, Oregon  2, 3) Dick Daniels - Wyoming    4) Charlie Westerinen - Takkalsow Falls, British Columbia


Nutcracker, Spotted  also Eurasian Nutcracke Nucifraga caryocatactes  Found: Europe, Asia
The Spotted Nutcracker is mainly choclate brown with white spots and white streaks. The wings and upper tail are blackish.
Image by:  1 ) Staszek99  2) MurrayBHenson - Poland  3) Cristiano Crolle - Val Roseg, Switzerland



Genus Perisoreus
The gray jays. All three species store food and live year-round on permanent territories in coniferous forests.

Jay, Gray Perisoreus canadensis Found: North America
The Gray Jay has dark gray upperparts; dark rear of head, light gray underparts; light fore-crown, neck, upper breast.
Similar to: Clark's Nutcracker. Clark's Nutcracker has black on wings; Gray Jay does not. Gray Jay has dark nape; Clark's Nutcracker has light colored nape.
Image by: 1) Ken Clifton - Oregon  2) Seabamirum  3, 4, 5,  6, 7) Dick Daniels - Wonder Lake, Denali National Park   8) Cephas - Quebec, Canada
1) Light juvenile  2) Dark Juvenile


Jay, Siberian  Perisoreus infaustus  Found: Europe, Asia
Image by: 1) Daniel Pettersson  2) Estormiz - Finland


Jay, Sichuan   Perisoreus internigrans  Found: China
Image by: 1) Unknown  2) Jan Veensta



Genus Platylophus - 1 species

Jay, Crested   Platylophus galericulatus  Found: southeast Asia, Indonesia, Malaysia
Image by: 1) Doug Janson - urong Bird Park, Singapore  2) Zakir Hassan



Genus Podoces
The ground-jays inhabit high altitude semi-desert areas from central Asia to Mongolia. Theys show adaptations to ground living such as long, strong legs adapted to fast running and the ability to leap and bound onto boulders and rocks with great agility. Their long, curved thick bills are adapted for digging and probing. While capable of flight (which they do infrequently and relatively weakly), they prefer running, and will readily perch on trees and bushes also.

Jay, Mongolian Ground- also Henderson's Ground-Jay  Podoces hendersoni  Found: Mongolia, China, Kazakhstan, and Russia
The Mongolian Ground-Jay has mainly tan plumage; black and blue on flight feathers; black forehead; relatively long and curved bill.
Image by: 1) Jargal Lamjay


Jay, Pleske's Ground- also Iranian Ground-Jay  Podoces pleskei  Found: Iran
Image by: 1) Amir Hossein


Jay, Turkestan Ground- also Pander's Ground-Jay  Podoces panderi  Found: central Asia
The Turkestan Ground-Jay has blue-gray upperparts; tan underparts; black upper-breast patch, uppertail.
Image by: 1) John Gerrard Keulemans  2) Alastair Rae  3) Francesco Veronesi - Uzbekistan


Jay, Xinjiang Ground- also Biddulph's Ground-Jay  Podoces biddulphi  Found: China
The Xinjiang Ground-Jay has mainly light brown plumage; black crown, cheek patch blackish throat; long and curved bill.
Image by: 1) John Gerrard Keulemans  2) P_Khoo  3) Chong Qing Ka



Genus Psilorhinus - 1 species

Jay, Brown  Psilorhinus morio  Found: North America (southern Texas), Central America
The Brown Jay comes in two types. Northern birds have dark brown upperpart; light brown underparts. Southern birds have white bellies.
Image by: 1) Kathy & Sam - Costa Rica  2) Jerry Oldenettel - Costa Rica  3) Dominik Hoter - Costa Rica   4) Carol Foil - Costa Rica
1) 1st year  2) 2nd year



Genus Ptilostomus - 1 species

Piapiac  Ptilostomus afer  Found: tropical Africa
The Piapiac has mainly black plumage; brownish-black tail; black bill, legs.
Image by: 1) Dick Daniels - specimen in Nairobi National Museum, Kenya  2) JV Verde - Gambia  3) Thomas Brown - Gunjur, Gambia








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