Blue Jay vs Bluebird

Blue Jay vs Bluebird: [Top 10 Similarities And Differences]

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Blue Jay Vs Bluebird

When you spot a bluebird flying through the sky, there is a good chance that you’re going to think it is a blue jay. However, you should know that there is more than one bird that is blue. You have the blue jay and the bluebird.

While they’re similar, they have many differences too. To distinguish between the two, you should learn about the similarities and differences of these two birds. Below, you’re going to learn about the top differences and similarities between blue jays and bluebirds.

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Same Order

While these birds are different, there are many traits that they share. One thing to note is that they belong to the same order of birds. Both are a member of the Passerine order. This means that they’re related in many ways. While they’re different, they belong to the same order and this means that they’re like family.

Blue Plumage

Blue Jay Vs Bluebird 

Both the bluejay and bluebird are known for their vivid coloring. The blue plumage makes it extremely difficult for average people to differentiate between the two. While these birds share the same blue plumage, they differ in many ways. But, only avid birdwatchers and ornithologists would be aware of these differences. If you are a fan of birds, you may know how to identify these birds by other markings and behaviors.

The blue plumage that both the bluebird and bluejay shares is what makes them so eye appealing. However, the shade or hue of the blue plumage is a big indicator the birds are male or female. For example, the male bluebird’s body is a sky blue and the wings, head, and belly are white.

The female bluebird has a blue body with feathers of a brownish mixture. Once you are able to distinguish the between the genders, you will instantly be able to determine if they are bluebird or bluejay.

The male bluebird varies in size from 10 to 12 inches, which is slightly larger than the female bluebird. Another definitive marking of the male bluebird is a “perky” crest. Any avid birdwatcher or ornithologist would be able to pick a male out of a flock of females just by looking at the head.

Origin

The western bluebird originates from several areas, including Honduras, Canada, and the Rockies. The mountain bluebird, on the other hand, originates from Mexico and Canada. It is not unusual for the western bluebird to be found in the woodlands.

The western bluebird is commonly found in the woodlands while the eastern bluebird in open country, such as backyards, fields, and pastures.

Omnivores

Another thing that they share is their eating habits. While they may eat different things, they’re both omnivores. This means that they’re versatile eaters. They’re not going to turn down any food.

They’ll eat plants and insects. It is very common to find all types of bluebirds eating plants and insects. However, it should be noted that blue jays are more likely to eat nuts, acorns, and seeds.

Temperament

When most people think of birds as a species they don’t tend to think of them as aggressive creatures. This really makes sense since they are not portrayed as aggressive creatures. However, you might be surprised to learn that there are some species that are particularly aggressive.

And, one of these species would be the blue jay. Not only are blue jays aggressive, but they are noisy. They are not afraid to make a little noise to get their point across or to scare off an intruder. You would think that birds would try to be quiet to mask their location, but that isn’t the case with the blue jay.

Bluebirds, on the other hand, aren’t nearly as aggressive. Of course, this doesn’t mean that there aren’t some subspecies of bluebirds that are aggressive. One such subspecies that is overly aggressive is the western bluebird. In fact, this bird is so aggressive that it will run other species out when they show up.

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Nursing Their Young

Blue Jay Vs Bluebird 

It is true that both blue jays and bluebirds are not considered mammals. This means that they do not nurse or provide milk for their young. However, the do have young and taking care of them will be a crucial concern. Both the blue jay and the bluebird are rather tentative when it comes to caring for their young.

Both species will care for their hatchling by regurgitating food for them. Both species won’t hesitate for a second to fend their young either.

Their Size

First and foremost, you should take a look at the size of the two. When you do, you will see that there is a stark difference in terms of size. On average, the blue jay is much bigger than the bluebird. While it can depend on several factors, the bluebird will range in size from 6.5 to 8.5 inches.

The blue jay is bigger in most cases. It is common for blue jays to reach sizes of 10 to 12 inches. If you spot a bluebird that is bigger, you can guarantee that it is a blue jay. This is one of the easiest ways to determine which type of bird you’re dealing with.

Different Locations

When it comes to the bluebird, you will see that they’re more diverse. There are many species. For instance, you will see an eastern bluebird. This means that the bird can be found to the east of the Rockies.

Western bluebirds are the exact opposite. They’ll be found on the west of the Rocky Mountains. You can also find mountain bluebirds. These birds will cross this territory.

The blue jay is a little different. It is common for blue jays to be found across North America. However, they tend to be more common in the northwestern portion of the area. Since it is common to find both birds in the same areas, there is a good chance that you’re going to mix them up at some point in the future.

Mating Rituals

Another thing that sets these two apart is the mating ritual. Again, there are many types of bluebirds. Therefore, it can be difficult to know exactly how they’re going to mate. All bluebirds are going to mate more than once per year.

The eastern bluebird may have as many as seven eggs in a clutch. Mountain bluebirds will have more eights. The clutch of a western bluebird will be smaller. Blue jays are only going to mate once a year. The clutch size will range from two to seven. On average, blue jays are going to incubate their eggs for three weeks.

Diet Differences

While both birds are omnivores, it is vital to understand that they’re going to eat different things. Take a look at the bluebird and you’ll see that it has a smaller beak. This restricts its diet.

In most cases, bluebirds will with stick softer foods. Blue jays have stronger and larger beaks. This gives them the ability to eat nuts, acorns, and seeds without any problems.

Summary

Ultimately, these two birds look similar. They share many of the same traits and behaviors. However, there are many things that set them apart. Until you’ve learned about the similarities and differences, you won’t be able to tell the difference.

Now that you’ve read this guide, you should have an easier time figure out which type you’re looking at. Just remember that it is common to find blue jays and bluebirds in the same areas.