A Hundred Bluejays

Carole & I were standing out on the deck a couple of evenings ago. The deck faces the river, though the water is mostly screened by trees. We're deep in the woods here, so we have lots of birds & the jays have been active lately, calling & rattling around in the trees, but there seemed to be even more activity than usual. In a period of ten minutes, we saw at least a hundred jays fly from the maples by the river, over the house, to the pines by the road & then into the deeper woods. Clearly, we were witnessing the jays' fall migration from the higher mountains down to our foothills. At least some of them will hang around all winter. Here are some historical accounts of such migrations going back to the 19th century from Life Histories of North American Birds.

Author: jd

Joseph Duemer is Professor of Literature Emeritus at Clarkson University in northern New York state. His most recent book of poems is Magical Thinking from Ohio State University Press. Since the mid-1990s he has spent a good deal of time in Vietnam, mostly Hanoi. He lives with his wife Carole & five terriers (four Jack Russells & one Patterdale) on the stony bank of the Raquette River in South Colton.

3 thoughts on “A Hundred Bluejays”

  1. Speaking of gatherings:


    Twilight August 23
    Gulf Fritillary’s back
    alone to lay
    her million eggs

    how does it work
    O yes he mounts her
    they pray then start
    frantic dancing

    but north she rowed
    to this one vine
    I’d no idea when I planted

    how glad afraid
    I’d feel to find
    how much I missed her.

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