Florida Scrub Jay

IMG_4925

Florida Scrub Jay, landed on my hat. I had enough slack in the neck strap to rotate the camera and get this shot!

I make a yearly trek to and from the Eastern Shore of Maryland to Naples, Florida and have used that to see the Scrub Jays at the Lyonia Preserve in Deltona, just off interstate 95. I first saw this bird there in 2010, when it landed on my head. At the time I had an Canon SX10 camera and was able to rotate it upwards and get a reasonable shot, below. I’ve since learned that this bird is very trusting and happy around humans, and others have had similar experiences–maybe part of the reason their numbers are falling. This bird is the only bird that’s found only in Florida and now numbers less that 6000. It depends on a sandy habitat with low scrub vegetation, obviously becoming scarcer in Florida. Photographing this bird with my Canon 400mm F5.6L lens is a chore. I’m constantly backing up and the friendly bird keeps following me. That’s why some of the shots that I’ll try to post in the gallery don’t include the entire bird. Oh well, maybe someday I’ll own the new 100-400 zoom.

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