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Green Jay


IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

A colorful tropical bird found primarily in Mexico and South America, the Green Jay just makes its way into the United States in southern Texas.

At a GlanceHelp

Both Sexes
11.4 in
29 cm
2.3–3.9 oz
66–110 g
Other Names
  • Geai vert (French)
  • Queisque verde, Shara verde, Urraca de montana, Picahayote (Spanish)

Cool Facts

  • The Central American and South American populations of the Green Jay are separated by 1,500 km (900 mi). The two different groups differ in color, calls, and habitat use, and may be different species. The South American Green Jays are larger and have a crest in front of their eyes.
  • A Texas Green Jay flock consists of a breeding pair, the current year's nestlings, and one-year-old, non-breeding jays from the previous year's nest. The one-year-olds defend the territory, which aids the parents, but they are ejected from the family flock soon after the current year's nestlings have fledged.
  • In Colombia, the Green Jay retains offspring for several years, and those young help the parents raise more chicks.
  • The oldest recorded Green Jay was at least 11 years, 7 months old, and lived in Texas.


Open Woodland

In Texas, uses open woodland and brushy mesquite thickets. In rest of range found in humid forests.



Arthropods, vertebrates, seeds, and fruit.


Nesting Facts
Egg Description
Pale greenish white with dark spots near large end.
Condition at Hatching
Naked and helpless.
Nest Description

Flimsy open cup of thorny twigs, lined with fine roots, vine stems, moss, and dry grass.

Nest Placement



Foliage Gleaner


status via IUCN

Least Concern

The Green Jay's range has been expanding in Texas, and populations increased between 1966 and 2015, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 2 million, with 4% living in the U.S., and 40% in Mexico. The species rates an 11 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score and is not on the 2016 State of North America's Birds' Watch List.


Range Map Help

Green Jay Range Map
View dynamic map of eBird sightings

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