Canada Jays

Canada jay.

My brother and his wife recently visited and we drove to the top of Mt. Walker hoping to get a good view of the area. There were partly cloudy skies. We were fortunate that the cloud cover was high enough to get a decent view. We could just barely make out Seattle and Mt. Rainier in the distance. It was hazy and I had difficulty getting the camera to focus on Seattle. We could barely see it with binoculars, so I pointed my camera in that direction and took a bunch of pictures hoping at least one would be in focus. Because of the atmospheric conditions, what we could see of Seattle appeared unusually large for that distance.

View from Mt. Walker. You can barely see Mt. Rainier in the distance in the center.
A view of Seattle from Mt. Walker. There was a lot of haze and a blue tint to everything.

When we went to the north outlook, a pair of Canada jays visited in hopes of getting something to eat. Another group brought some bread and the little birds bravely landed on any outstretched hand that had food on it. Canada jays were called Gray jays until 2018. They are also known as whiskey jacks and camp robbers. They use their saliva to store food above the presumed snow line allowing them to live successfully through the winter in northern forests up to the tree line. The pair of birds that visited us were taking the bread to cache and coming back for more.

Canada jay.
Canada jay taking bread from someone’s hand.
Canada jay with bread in its beak.
Steller’s jay.

While our guests were with us, Clover stole their socks. At the time, she could not get outside to stash them under the deck, so she left them at the door. She also jumped into their bed with them. The dogs are not allowed on the furniture, so I do not know where that behavior came from. The two dogs look alike but it does not take people long to figure out by each dog’s behavior which one is Clover.

The vet told me to move them to adult dog food and transition slowly. You do that by mixing the puppy food and adult food and increasing the amount of adult food until you complete the transition. Clover and Raven immediately began picking out the puppy food and tossing it on the floor, so mixing the two foods did not work for us.

The collie puppies are more interested in the adult food than the puppy food. After mixing the two to transition slowly over to adult food, the collies removed the puppy kibble and tossed it on the floor.

We have a driveway with a steep drop off on one side. Regis took the dogs for a walk the other day and let them loose upon returning to the driveway. We try to use the opportunity to ensure they learn not to run away and come when called. When Regis let them loose, Clover pushed Raven over the edge of the driveway. Regis told me that Raven has four-wheel drive, so he recovered quickly without getting hurt.

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