Wicken Fen – A shy bird


This is one of my favourite birds..

The Jay which is one of the most important natural planters of acorns and is a member of the crow family. They can be very hard to spot and when I was in a bird hide at the National Trust property Wicken Fen I was extremely lucky to see it visit a bird feeder full of peanuts.

Doesn’t it have the most beautiful plumage.





 …but it didn’t stay long,  a pheasant called and it looked up..



and was gone .. this shot below is my favourite; showing the impact on the still-in-focus bird feeder as the Jay flies away.



You can see my other Wicken Fen photos here  


If you’d like to you can read my other blog 1500 Saturdays here  



28 thoughts on “Wicken Fen – A shy bird

  1. Awesome. Well done in getting one to stay still long enough to get some decent shots. They are such noisy birds, but all I usually see of them is a flash of pink and blue as they flit through the trees.

  2. They are beautiful birds, although like most members of the crow family they have some unsavoury habits. You did well to get such lovely pictures, as Stephen says all you usually see is the flash of pink and blue as they fly off. I didn’t know they were the main acorn planters either, I always assumed that was squirrels.

    • Here’s a bit of my research – “Jays (Garrulus glandarius) eat acorns (Quercus spp.) and can carry them (up to five per flight) for several kilometres. These birds store the acorns by burying them, to eat at a later time. They often have a preference for burying them near a tree or shrub, at the edge of the forest. In one autumn they can bury as many as 4,600 acorns, and can remember the locations of them all! Harsh weather and hungry predators, however, will take their share of jays, and this enables some seeds to germinate”

  3. I didn’t know that about acorns. Perhaps that’s why we see a jay so very often in our garden; it’s attracted by the oak tree. They are beautiful although their habits are perhaps less so. This year I watched helplessly as the jay robbed a blackbird’s nest in the rose on my wall. No point interfering as once they’ve found a nest they’ll just come back. Hard to watch the fledglings being carried off one by one though. Still, that’s nature.

  4. Nice shots Cherry-Bomb…..
    My garden was the scene of a turf war between a Jay (possibly a pair, but I didn’t see two together), and a pair of Magpies around a month ago…..Just over a week of raucous squabbles replacing my alarm clock….
    The Magpies are still here, which is only fair as they’ve used the same nest site for three years now, but, I do miss the Jay.

  5. Great birding Helen! Last night watched “The Big Year”. This morning, the first image on my screen is your Wicken Fen. If three’s the charm, there’s a bird in my life today. ..Wonderful shots.

  6. Tee-hee, “Cherry Bomb”. I like that. Not because I know anything about The Runaways, but because I like the firecracker allusion. And I really love the first shot of this jay!! Marvelous in its lichen-y environment…

  7. Pingback: Wicken Fen – Squirreling Nuts ! « Helen's Photomania Blog – a 366 of sorts.

  8. We used to have one at home in Belgium visiting the garden.I think there still is one. I have never seen them in Ireland before, but on our walk in Cootehill forest last monday I saw a bird fly away, brown, a bit of black in the tail, the right size for a jay and I was wondering did I just spot one???

    • I have seen them a couple of time in Ireland when I lived there.. You may have done Marleen they are hard to sp[ot… usually you just see a pinky blue flash of colour!

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