Friday, April 8, 2011

The blue-crowned Stellar's Jay announces spring

Photo: Alan D. Wilson, Wikimedia

The cold winter continued all through March, even as the crocus and daffodils came out on schedule. April's been a bit warmer.

I experienced a sign of spring when I opened the back door and saw a flash of blue as a Stellar's Jay landed in a cedar tree. Staying very still I waited for the bird to ruffle its brilliant plumage and flaunt the proud crown of feathers.

The birds out here in the suburbs are different from urban birds. Years ago, when we moved from East Vancouver to Surrey, I saw the first jay I'd seen in ages. At the time, I was piggybacking my five-year-old through a stretch of unaltered native vegetation. Seeing the blue jay made me feel we were in the country, or a small town.

The blue bird of happiness flew by today, and he was a Stellar's Jay, only a few feet away.

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