I'm not a 'Twitcher' but

  johndrew 12:11 18 Nov 2010
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I was very surprised just a moment ago when my wife call to me there were a pair of Jays in the garden.

We have been in this house which is surrounded by others for 10 years and have never seen a Jay in the area - no Oak trees local to us. They were both within 15 feet of the window so we had a good view of these quite lovely birds. We can only presume they came to pinch the peanuts put out for the birds; one certainly had one in its bill.

  sunnystaines 12:15 18 Nov 2010

we get a lot of jays here but rare to see more than one at a time.

  Macscouse 13:46 18 Nov 2010

I haven't seen a jay in this neck of the woods for the last 5 years, but this year I've seen five in the area.
I've got a bunch of goldfinches in the garden, hogging the feeders, and attacking any other birds that dare to come near. Even the hoodies back off when the goldfinches start their ASBO antics.

  john bunyan 14:37 18 Nov 2010

We have a couple of jays outsite every day. Also magpies . my feeders are emptied quickly by great tits. Have seen 2 green and one lesser spotted woodpeckers on a dead willow in my neighbours garden a lot, and a nuthatch.Wish I had goldfinches, or ideally, bullfinches as at my last house.

  gardener 14:45 18 Nov 2010

You're lucky, jays are normally very secretive birds, hiding in dense woodland. Maybe they were hungry?

  john bunyan 15:06 18 Nov 2010

"You're lucky, jays are normally very secretive birds"
Ours must be extrovert as they have been there for years, hopping along my boundary wall.Thy look well fed. They look nice but like all crow family seem a bit aggressive, and not a songbird!

  johndrew 19:35 18 Nov 2010

".. hiding in dense woodland."

That was our main surprise. We are around 500 yards from the nearest trees and several miles from any copse or woodland. Given they were pinching the peanuts I think they came simply for food.

We get many small birds - Gold finches, Green finches, Blue tits, Great tits, Sparrows (of course), a Dunnock, Robins and a Wren - some of which nest in the garden. We also have a 'resident' Sparrow Hawk and have seen a Spotted Woodpecker on one occasion. We also get Wood Pigeon, (the inevitable) Collar Doves, Blackbirds, Starlings and some others. But the arrival of these Jays was as big an event as the Woodpecker.

All very nice though.

  sunnystaines 21:12 18 Nov 2010

we have have Sparrow Hawk that hangs around, helps keep the pidgeon numbers down, also recently been getting spectacular red kites circling around but up high.

  hssutton 21:41 18 Nov 2010

"You're lucky, jays are normally very secretive birds, hiding in dense woodland. Maybe they were hungry?"

Must agree with this statement as do the RSPB click here

I do a lot of bird photography, but have never yet been able to capture one on film/digital.

  BT 08:48 19 Nov 2010

Where I used to live in SE23 in London we used to see quite a few Jays. They would even perch on the railings of our balcony.

  morddwyd 20:23 19 Nov 2010

Nothing as secretive as a Jay, but had a Coal Tit on the bird table this morning.

Not too unusual for some, we had our own breeding population in our garde in Cornwall, but that's the first one in this garden in the twenty years we've been here.

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