Cheetos Connoisseur

Although we enjoyed being able to spend the entire month of January in the mask-free state of Texas, the fact we had to move all of our medical appointments and checkups to this month has got us lately feeling a bit …hmm.. let’s go with …. blue.

Steller's Jay found at Lake Tahoe in May 2019

Oh, before I go any further, I am reminded by the fluffy cotton ball currently covering a large gaping, cavernous, crater of a hole in the middle of my arm that today was lab day, meaning about 50 vials of my precious life sustaining blood has been maliciously sucked out of my body by a dominatrix dressed up in nurse clothing. I keep telling my doctor I was the reference for Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man and this whole drain me within inches of my life is entirely unnecessary. Then he holds up my medical records with the running err “events” circled in red, takes out his little blue pad, with his blue pen filled with evil blue ink to remind his blue clad nurse to schedule the draining (complete with one of those god-awful smiley faces on it).

Steller's Jay found at Lake Tahoe in May 2019

Hit the jump to read about this high crested Jay…well, maybe.

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Why So Blue Woody?

So far it has been a pretty productive blogging effort this March. Think this is my third post and the month is only 5 days old! Truth be told, there was a slight lull in my daily grind with the recent neck surgery which put a hold on my run training schedule. This gave a lot of extra time to work up images ahead of time – that is the most time consuming part of this little enterprise. Fortunately, that lull is over now and I’m back to pounding the pavement every other day (today put in 10 miles, but need to start pushing it – race season commences mid April and losing 13 days because of the stitches didn’t help). While the legs rest for a bit thought it would be a good time to exercise the fingers and pound out a post (never hurts to get ahead of the self-imposed blogging quota).

Since I led this month with two back to back bird posts, figured it was about time to go with something different…
Steller's Jay shot in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado in May 2014
Ummm, well admittedly that is another bird, but it is different! This time it is not a new bird on my birding list. See, completely different. The Steller’s Jay already debuted on my blog 8 years back (link here) It is quite shocking to think I am in my 10th year of blogging – where has the time gone? The time not spent running that is ha. Like the previous time, this Steller’s was shot in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado back in May 2014. If you live in the heartland (or fly over country for the coasters) like me, you are going to have to make your way out west if you want to have a chance to see these rather cool looking birds. Probably a good thing for our birds seeing how intimidating these Jays look in person – might give our local birds a complex.
Steller's Jay shot in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado in May 2014

Hit the jump to see a few more images of the Steller’s and maybe learn some interesting facts.

Continue reading Why So Blue Woody?

That is One Steller Jay

The WordPress update effort has put me slightly behind, but nothing a quick jump back to the Yellowstone pictures can’t fix.  While we were out there, we came across this interesting bird.  This was actually the first time I have ever seen this particular variety and it caught me off guard when I saw it walking across a picnic table.  This is not my best effort in getting tack sharp photos, but it was a struggle to get it to stand still for even a second so I could zero in on it or attempt to focus through the branches.  According the trusty Audubon guide this is a Steller’s Jay and member of the Jay and Crow family.

According to the field guide, this bird is on the brash side and mostly omnivorous.  True to the description, it was indeed scrounging for food among the various groups picnicking in the area.  From a visual perspective, it is quite stellar looking with a bright blue back offset by a black plumed head…. somewhat woodpecker looking with a different color pallet.

From this particular picture it is obvious our presence was intruding on his foraging.  Okay, I admit it, my focus hand was shaking out of fear the bird was going to stab me with its beak and rip my eyeball out.  What, you do not believe me?  Take a look at this shot smarty pants and tell me if this isn’t one pissed off bird.

Oh yeah, his meat instincts are kicking into high gear.  I decided from that point on that all further pictures would stealth shots outside its vision.  Hit the jump to see a few more shots of this quite interesting bird

Continue reading That is One Steller Jay