The colorful blue jay is a vocal creature. It derives its name from its loud cry of "jay jay." It also screams, twitters, whistles melodiously, and produces remarkable imitations of the cries of several hawks. However, unlike most birds, blue jays become almost silent during the nesting season. Although known for their aggressive behavior, there's no denying the spectacular beauty of these bright blue, prominently crested birds. Jays are common throughout southern Canada and the eastern U.S. In Canada they shy away from urban areas, but in the States they appear quite at home in backyard and suburban lawns and shrubbery. They eat seeds of all kinds, but prefer peanut kernels and sunflower seeds, which they eat without bothering to remove the husks. During the summer, these large (10") birds feast on insects, nuts and berries.
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