Fun Florida Scrub Jay Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
Oct 28, 2022 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Jacob Fitzbright
Fact-checked by Sonali Rawat
Read Florida scrub jay facts here.

The Florida scrub jay, as the name suggests, is endemic to Florida (mostly central Florida). They are found in sandy oak scrub and scrubby flatwoods.

These North American birds are social and territorial. During the nesting period, young birds help protect the nest and feed the babies, and they do this until they get their own territory.

They are omnivores, and acorns form an important part of their diet. They hop on the ground to find acorns and bury them in the ground to eat later.

These birds are unique for a number of reasons, but mainly because they don't live anywhere other than Florida. Their striking blue feathers are similar to those of a blue jay.

However, scrub jays do not have a crest or any black marking like the blue jay does. The back, neck, head, and underside of the bird are gray or white in color. Keep on reading to learn more fun facts about the Florida scrub jay.

If you like reading animal facts, do check out more facts about blue jays and cockatiels.

Florida Scrub Jay Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Florida scrub jay?

A Florida scrub jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens) is a type of bird.

What class of animal does a Florida scrub jay belong to?

A Florida scrub jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens) belongs to the Aves class (order: Passeriformes, family: Corvidae).

How many Florida scrub jays are there in the world?

The exact number is unknown.

Where does a Florida scrub jay live?

Florida scrub jays(Aphelocoma coerulescens) live in Florida's subtropical forest eco-regions, usually nesting in low-level scrub regions.

What is a Florida scrub jay's habitat?

This bird is restricted to the state of Florida in the USA, in particular its oak scrub and flatwoods. These North American birds do not live in forests and are mostly found in sandy territories such as sand pine, burn sites, oak scrub, and shore-dune thickets.

Who do Florida scrub jays live with?

These birds are both territorial and social. They look out for their family members in the nest. Female birds use a distinct hiccup sound to communicate. They live in groups of their own and work together in territorial groups.

How long does a Florida scrub jay live?

This species typically lives for four to five years. In the wild, they can live for 11 years.

How do they reproduce?

These birds attain sexual maturity and start breeding after one year. Male birds use posturing and vocalizations to attract their female counterparts during the breeding season (March to June).

Eggs are generally pale green in color with distinct markings and these eggs hatch after about 17 days. Scrub jays use cooperative breeding, where young helper birds who belong to the same group provide food for the baby bird and constantly watch the nest for threats from predators.

What is their conservation status?

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN Red List), the conservation status of the Florida scrub jay is Vulnerable. It is a low-growing population, therefore it is a threatened species.

Florida Scrub Jay Fun Facts

What do Florida Scrub Jays look like?

Florida scrub jays are blue and gray in color. They have a blue head, wings, and tail, a gray back and underparts, and a whitish forehead and neck. Males and females look similar, the only difference being that the male is slightly larger.

How cute are they?

These adult birds are beautiful to look at, but juveniles are dull and dark brown in some areas and are not as cute.

How do they communicate?

Florida scrub jays use visual cues to communicate. They also use vocal methods, like the female bird's hiccup noise to communicate or warn against predators.

How big is a Florida Scrub Jay?

This bird is about 9.1-11.0 in (23-28 cm) long and 2.3-3.2 oz (66-92 g) in weight. Their tail is particularly long. This is much smaller than the size of a barn owl.

How fast can a Florida Scrub Jay fly?

Their speed is unknown but they hop on the ground and can even run if the need arises.

How much does a Florida Scrub Jay weigh?

An average adult bird weighs about 2.3-3.2 oz (66-92 g).

What are their male and female names of the species?

Male and female birds do not have distinct names.

What would you call a baby Florida Scrub Jay?

A baby scrub jay is a chick. This name is common for most baby birds.

What do they eat?

This species of bird is omnivorous. They search for food on the ground by hopping around. They love to eat acorns and often bury them in the ground for later use. Along with acorns they also eat nuts, fruits, seeds, snakes, lizards, tree frogs, insects, and mice.

Are they dangerous?

These birds are not considered to be dangerous to human beings. However, small insects and animals are a part of their diet. They are not an aggressive species either.

Would they make a good pet?

As with many wild birds of North America, they are not generally meant to be kept as pets. They are endemic to Florida and prefer the state's scrub habitat, so moving them to another climate or environment might not work for them.

Did you know...

Different members of family groups take turns to watch for hawks or any other threats whilst the rest of the family go to find food. In case they spot a hawk or feel otherwise threatened, they give out a warning alarm call and everyone returns to the nest.

These birds do not migrate or move to areas that do not have scrub oak habitats.

The oldest bird of this species of scrub jays was recorded to be 15 years old!

Florida scrub jays are a species of scrub jay. Out of 15 endemic species in the United States, it is the only one in Florida

Why are Florida Scrub Jays endangered?

A loss of habitat is one of the key problems that has threatened this species. About 90% of the population has been lost in the last 100 years. The primary threats these birds face are related to the destruction of their territory and habitats, mainly due to rapid urbanization, fire suppression, and growth in agriculture.

The Florida Scrub Jays survival

These birds are endemic, therefore their need for a suitable habitat is of utmost importance. When people feed them near the road, these birds often accidentally collide with vehicles. They are beautiful, bold, live with family, and do not travel too far from where they were born.

They are also considered to be great birds to be photographed. As curious birds, they may also approach people and are very friendly. Because of this, it is important to protect them.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds including these pileated woodpecker facts and great green macaw facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable boho birds coloring pages.

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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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Fact-checked by Sonali Rawat

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English Literature, Masters of Art specializing in English and Communication Skills

Sonali Rawat picture

Sonali RawatBachelor of Arts specializing in English Literature, Masters of Art specializing in English and Communication Skills

Sonali has a Bachelor's degree in English literature from Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University and is currently pursuing a Master's in English and Communication from Christ University. With considerable experience in writing about lifestyle topics, including travel and health, she has a passion for Japanese culture, especially fashion, and anime, and has written on the subject before. Sonali has event managed a creative-writing festival and coordinated a student magazine at her university. Her favorite authors are Toni Morrison and Anita Desai.

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