Full frame capture composed in camera of a Jay (Garrulus glandarius) taken in the garden a few days ago. I was amazed when this one flew out into the open and just within my range, as they usually lurk high amongst the branches and are very shy. Wish I'd been on F8 or slightly higher, but this was so unexpected, there was no time to make adjustments and he was gone in a flash. 8.7m from subject, tripod
Although they are the most colourful members of the crow family, jays are actually quite difficult to see. They are shy woodland birds, rarely moving far from cover. The screaming call usually lets you know a jay is about and it is usually given when a bird is on the move, so watch for a bird flying between the trees with its distinctive flash of white on the rump. Jays are famous for their acorn feeding habits and in the autumn you may see them burying acorns for retrieving later in the winter.
Found across most of the UK, except northern Scotland. Lives in both deciduous and coniferous woodland, parks and mature gardens. Likes oak trees in autumn when there are plenty of acorns. Often seen flying across a woodland glade giving its screeching call, it becomes more obvious in autumn when it may fly some distance in the open in search of acorns.
Seen all year round, but often more obvious in autumn when they travel most in search of acorns, beech mast and hazelnuts to bury. They eat mainly acorns, nuts, seeds and insects, but also eats nestlings of other birds and small mammals.