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Help develop a Bird ID tool!

Pinyon Jay

Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus ORDER: PASSERIFORMES FAMILY: CORVIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Vulnerable

Pinyon Jay Photo

A highly social bird of the lower mountain slopes of the western United States, the Pinyon Jay is specialized for feeding on pine seeds. Each jay stores thousands of seeds each year, and has such a good memory that it can remember where most of them were hidden.

Yard Map Birds Eye View
Be a Better Birder Tutorial 4

Appearance

Crows and Jays
Crows and Jays
Typical Voice

Adult Description

  • Large songbird.
  • Entirely dull blue, except for whitish chin.
  • Relatively short tail.
  • Large, pointed bill.
  • Travels in large flocks.

Immature Description

Juvenile uniformly dull gray. Immature similar to adult, but duller.

Range Map Help

Pinyon Jay Range Map
View dynamic map of eBird sightings

Field MarksHelp

  •  

    Pinyon Jay

     
    • © Pam Koch/GBBC, Arizona
  •  

    Pinyon Jay

     
    • © Pam Koch/GBBC, Arizona
  • Flock at feeder

    Pinyon Jay

    Flock at feeder
    • © David Smith/PFW, Colorado
  • Juvenile

    Pinyon Jay

    Juvenile
  •  

    Pinyon Jay

     
    • © Jeanette Tasey/GBBC, Montana

Similar Species

Mexican Jay has longer tail, shorter bill, and less blue on chest.

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