|Scientific name||Calocitta colliei|
|Length||23 to 30 inches (58.5 to 76.5 centimeters)|
|Weight||8 to 9 ounces (227 to 255 grams)|
|Number of eggs||3 to 7 eggs|
|Incubation||17 to 20 days|
Hold up; it’s hammer time
Black-throated magpie jays use their beaks like hammers to crack open seed casings. They also eat fruits and small invertebrates.
A species of its own
Two common types of magpie-jays bred to create this hybrid. Orginially, black-throated magpie jays were not considered their own species. When these magpie-jays became more common in Central America, scientists began to recognize them as a new species.
Helpers and chicks
These birds travel in small group, like a family. Offspring and other females of the group, also known as helpers, work together to assist parents to build nests and care for chicks. The chicks all hatch at different times and have no feathers at first. 18 to 40 days after the last chick hatches, the whole group will fly away from the nest together.
People often mistake the black-throated blue magpie jay for other birds. In the American sitcom The Big Bang Theory, a character misidentifies a black-throated magpie jay as a blue jay in one episode. What this Mexican bird was doing in California, we will never know!
The best way to identify this species is to look at the tail, plumes, and throat. The tail and plumes are longer than those of the common blue jay. Also, the magpie jay’s throat has the long black patch of feathers that give this bird its name.
Black-throated magpie jays are not threatened.
No effort is too small!