Video – Human’s Actions Tell Blue Jays All They Need to Know

How to Get a Blue Jay to Trust You

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Blue Jays are such feisty, clever birds and aren’t afraid of humans. In fact, they’re one of the most intelligent birds you’ll see in your backyard.

They’re members of the corvid family, including other jay species such as Steller’s Jays, ravens, crows, and magpies.

Blue Jays Remember Human Faces

Studies show Blue Jays remember human faces, and if the birds take an interest in you, they might follow you around. But, unfortunately, we feel like the jays are always sizing us up and deciding if they can trust us.

So how do you get a Blue Jay to trust you?

Earning a Blue Jay’s Trust

-Offer Their Favorite Foods

You earn a Blue Jay’s trust by offering their favorite foods (sunflower, corn, peanuts) on large feeding platforms and open feeders.

-Provide Water

And don’t forget to provide them with a consistent water source for drinking and bathing.

-Offer Plenty of Cover

Offer plenty of native trees to provide cover. 

Our Blue Jays enjoy sitting in the fruit trees in camouflage, observing the other birds visiting “their” feeders. But, then, they enjoy darting out and trying to scare our migratory visitors, like the Baltimore Orioles.

But the jays fail every time. These long-distance flyers are not easily rattled. So the jay’s harsh, jeering jaay or jay-jay calls have little or no impact.

So they decide to sit and watch the humans instead.

-Don’t Spray Chemicals

And most important of all, please don’t use insecticides in your yard. Or any product that ends with “icide” in its name.

These products include herbicide, rodenticide, parasiticide, pesticide, fungicide, and vermicide. They pose a dangerous threat to your backyard nature sanctuary.

If you’re using chemical insecticides to kill ants, you may be harming the birds that visit your yard. Some chemicals used in ant poisons are highly toxic to birds, so let the birds be your natural insect control.

Have Fun with Your Blue Jays

Next time you offer peanuts in your platform feeder, count how many whole peanuts the jay can store in its crop. 

Our backyard Blue Jay record is 11. Though we have to admit, it looked like the bird was struggling to get airborne.

Take time out to enjoy these clever birds. They might teach you a thing or two.


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  1. Thank you for the information. We have lots of Blue Jays. My husband feeds them whole peanuts. When he’s late, boy they swak.

    • I have a scrub Jay who has been visiting me for 7 years,He takes food right from my fingers or anybody actually. He also seems to “talk” to me,! He comes when we have a lot of people or just us.

  2. Someone should track this guy’s presence online. Someone who thinks about torture during a discussion of living beings isn’t amusing, isn’t clever, isn’t interesting for any reason other than to cause people of some intelligence to be aware of his inability to think or feel, & how that might spill over into affecting the world outside his debilitated head.

  3. Thanks for the ideas I never would have guessed peanuts! There are tons of blue Jays all around my back area I always see them. I’m sure I can get them to come closer for a great picture now that I have some ideas. We intend to plants our dozens of sunflowers this year as well. That’s probably how I saw some last year and got a video of one. 🐦 🥜 🌻

    • I have blue jays that remind me to put peanuts out if I slack off. If I whistle to them when I’m adding peanuts, they come so fast – sometimes while my hand is still adding peanuts to the platform. Today I saw a jay near my work get hit by a car. I moved him from the street, but it was too late. Another jay I assume to be the partner flew back and forth around the dead jay all day, freaking out. These are highly intelligent and emotional beings (corvids) that create strong bonds.

  4. We have always had a couple of jays, but this morning, I was able to count 12. It is like counting goldfish, but I counted several times. Between them, the squirrels, crows, cardinals, finches, etc, they keep us busy keeping them in sunflower seeds. We are in southeast Ky.

  5. My Grandmother hated Blue Jays, she said they were bullies, so I, by default, always had a harsh attitude towards them. A few winters ago, it was a very cold and snowy winter in the North East, and I noticed, what I learned to be, dark eyed junkos, trying to peck through the icy snow to find pieces of acorns under our white oak tree. I never fed the birds before, but I drove straight to Walmart and bought several feeders and lots of bird seed. I bought a few bags of peanuts as well, thinking that I would put them out to distract the squirrels from the birdseed so they would leave them alone. I didn’t even have the peanuts out for 10 minutes and I had Blue Jays swooping in for them. That was 3 years ago, and I have come to consider the Blue Jays my favorite birds. They are ready for peanuts at 7 am SHARP, and they will lmk if I am running late, and will not stop until there’s a pound of peanuts in all the required placement.

    • I just Love them !!!
      Well, All the Feathered Friends and Squirrels & Lil Chippee🐿️.
      I have one Jay in particular that comes by a Hollerin’ at me too !!! He or She, will start 7 am and thru the day. When it starts, I will speak back ‘ Jay’ and so will it. It’s sooo Awesome.
      I keep hoping it will come up to me, but, I’m Happy just to have it come around. 😊💙
      I just don’t have the $, like I used to, feel bad about that.
      I so much Enjoy them All💝.

  6. We have baby Jays on my deck table for five days now! They fell out of the nest mama and papa built in our gazebo! I’m so glad I put sleeping bags and blankets out in case they fell. We feed mama and papa with sunflower seeds and water and they feed the 3 babies. The babies are thriving and should be ready to fly soon! This has been such an incredible experience. Mama and papa are starting to trust us. I hope they stay around in our yard! I’m going to buy peanuts today, thank you for the idea fellow bird lovers!🐦💙🪺

  7. We found a baby blue jay on the ground in our yard this evening. My son an I thought to move it, since we have a neighborhood cat and a whole bunch of foxes (at least 5 kits from at least 2 different dens) and a couple of raccoons this year. When we approached, the rest of the neighborhood jays let us know in no uncertain terms that they already had an eye on the little one! Waaaaay more than just mom and dad, too. I’d say there were at least 5 screaming at us and divebombing until we retreated and went inside to google what to do. (Seems like the answer is to leave it alone and let the other jays do the protecting. I hope the little one finds a good hiding spot before all the foxes come roaming around later tonight!)

  8. A blue jay took an interest in me. She followed me down the street and in my yard I named her bird and she often came near me when called. One day I opened my garage to get my bike out. Bird flew in chirping at me to say hello. I left the door open so she could fly out . But she flew into the wall. She died in my garage because she wanted to say hello to me. I feel so terrible. Humans need to be careful when befriending wild creatures. Maybe we shouldn’t do it.

    • Not true , we are all Gods creatures and we ALL need each other . That J came into your life for a reason, yes sad it died in your garage but better than being hit by a car or attacked by fox , coyote etc
      Always be thankful when God sends visitors from the wild it’s truly a gift from him

  9. Report that John Smaldone guy, talking about killing and torturing the Jays💙 !!!
    I don’t understand why it’s Allowed on here 😠

    And, just wanted to say, I have a Jay who ‘ hollers ‘ for me, All the time !!! 😊💙
    Wakes me up …and comes around other times throughout the day and just keeps hollering until I bring some more Peanuts out 😊.
    Eating me out of house and home. Just Love All of God’s Sweet Creatures. 💝
    Thank You for this good information about them here.

    • Hi Roxann. We agree and don’t condone violence against ANY living thing. Jays make life interesting and we enjoy having them in our backyard ecosystem.

  10. Recently a Steller Jay set up camp outside our place. Timid at first but he is now becoming more trusting. He’s quite a character and gets along with all the other critters – chipmunks, birds, a squirrel and a family of skunks. We have quite a menagerie. I’m looking forward to becoming friends with him. He watches as the critters come up to me for their food every day, the gears turning in his head.

    • Place the feeder high up on a pole. Place a 3 foot section of 4 inch stove pipe around the pole. The squirrels won’t be able to climb to the feeder. Keep the pole away from any trees so the squirrels can’t enter from above. Good luck.

    • I fastened a metal basket to the top of our clothesline pole and put in three handfuls of peanuts in the shell and several bluejays come and clean them up quickly. I hand to fasten a aluminum foil pizza sheet part way up the pole to keep the squirrels from eating all the peanuts. They can’t get to them now and none of the other birds are interested. So every morning we get to watch the Jay’s feast.

  11. I created a habitat on my small apartment deck, putting out peanuts for the scrub jays. Of course a squirrel started coming to deck, with the use of a plant mister on full stream, I think I have trained it to stay on the deck floor and eat grain, sunflower seed and a small amount of peanut I put out for it. Going up on potted plants and taking Scrub Jays peanuts is met with a spray of water and being chased off the deck.It’s been over a week now ( did this since September) and squirrel has not trespassed up on Scrub Jay feeding areas at all.

    • Hi Peggy. That’s such a great idea to deter the squirrel. You need to make a video of it and share!

  12. We’ve had a family of Stellars around here for year. Every year there is a new bunch of young. It’s fun watching them beg from the parent. They follow us around when we are outside, watching us and sometimes talking to us. By 7:00AM one will always be hammering on our deck rail and calling us for peanuts. They’ve learned to perch on our windowsill and tap on the glass for peanuts. Sometimes they will sit on the deck rail and just watch us through the window. They’re so funny.

  13. Seriously John Smaldone, i hope you get the help that you seriously need! That was a very disturbing and obviously concerning reply!!

    • We have removed that person’s comment. It was deeply disturbing and not a sentiment we share.

  14. Our bluejay (iceman) knows which rooms we occupy and whenever we raise our windowblind, he comes to find us and let us know he is ready for his peanuts. He has a friend (Jeff) that is a redbelly woodpecker.

  15. How I wish the blue jays would come to my little patio but I don’t have trees, etc.
    I so enjoyed reading everyone’s comments. I Love all birds.
    Gods creation is our blessing!🙏🫶🏻🤗

    • I fastened a metal basket to the top of our clothesline pole and put in three handfuls of peanuts in the shell and several bluejays come and clean them up quickly. I hand to fasten a aluminum foil pizza sheet part way up the pole to keep the squirrels from eating all the peanuts. They can’t get to them now and none of the other birds are interested. So every morning we get to watch the Jay’s feast.

  16. We have mostly Chickadees at our feeder in Maine. You can hear the Jays when they arrive! They, unlike the Chickadees, are very wary. I need to go inside before they come in to feed. Cardinals, too. Mostly in AM.😃

  17. Finally having our first true dump of snow and was truly amazed at how fast my beautiful birds were filling up like they knew it was coming. I am in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina, have been waiting for this amazing storm for some time and here it is. I am between two ski areas and they are in their element.

  18. I have one tree with winter-bare branches in back. This morning I heard a racket out there, and come to find at least 7 or 8 blue Jay’s flitting around that tree…and ONE male robin chasing them! I watched for about 10 amusing minutes, and one by one, that stinker drove them off! He looked very pleased with himself after that! No room at the inn for outsiders!

  19. 3 pairs of Jay’s nest in the back yards of 3 of my neighbors. Each of those neighbors have suitable trees for the Jay’s to nest and Jay pairs have taken that opportunity. As spring brings warmer weather I begin to have my morning coffee on my back patio and watch the Jay’s. In just a few mornings I caught on to two very interesting characteristics of the Jay’s. My property does not have any nesting trees but it does have a tree with thin folage in neutral territory. Each morning, around 8am when the air has warmed sufficiently, the 3 Jay pairs will take a 10-min break from their nesting duty to congregate in my tree for their morning social. Mindful of their hungry broods at home, they promptly break and get on with their busy day.

    Another neighbor has a tall pine containing a crow’s nest so naturally a crow will make its way,flying low and slow, just above the treetops and nests of the hatchling Jay’s, looking for an unprotected meal. The Jay pair launches a very affective battle plan. But neither Jay parent, male or female, is formidable to protect the hatchlings from the larger and more powerful intruder. They must work as a team.

    The male sets the ingenious plan into motion. Leaving Mrs Jay behind on the nest while he climbs skyward. At a couple of hundred feet above ground the gallant male turns earthward like a falcon and dives towards the target below. With perfect timing, Mrs. Jay leaves the nest to confront the crow from underneath. A risky thing to do but necessary to distract the crow away from Mr. Jay’s overhead attack. And, WHACK! Mr. Jay bodyslams the crow with enough force to injure both birds. Loosing several large flight feathers the crow squawks in pain and limps off towards his nest tree, barely maintaining enough altitude to land on the lowest branch. Luckily both Jay parents went unscathed and flew back to their nest.

  20. I love blue jays. We grew up feeding them peanuts at my parents house. We place the peanuts on the ledge outside of the upstairs bathroom and they would visit every morning for their breakfast. Last year the blue jays made a nest in one of our backyard trees and every time my dads Germans shepherd, Osa, would walk beneath the tree, the parent blue jays would dive bomb her out of no where. It was hilarious! They were protecting their babies and Osa just thought they were playing tag. She would happily spin and wag her tail. She was having a blast and it was so funny to watch.

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