|Mexican Jay-a common Jay found around Southern Arizona|
|With my dear friend Sydney at Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary|
I have a rule when seeking out birds. My goal in this life is to find as many of our planet's birds while I still can. It sounds quite simple but I assure you, it can be complicated. Before any trip, I research EVERYTHING! Places, birds, reports......you name it.
Several birds that become my priority are the endemics and endangered species. One of the birds of Florida that is an endemic is the Florida Scrub-Jay. I thought it to be numerous having heard several birders tell me it was a "trash" bird(a bird found EVERYWHERE). Turns out the Florida Scrub-Jay is not only endemic but endangered! Within our lifetimes, this bird could go extinct. When I read reports like this, I am saddened. It is very difficult for me to accept that we, as humans, are accelerating their extinction. My friend Gordon said to me that this Jay should be my priority as its numbers continue to diminish. When he told me this, I sat up the entire night reading. It broke my heart. How many birds will I see in my lifetime go extinct? Today I have seen several birds, like the Orange-breasted Falcon and California Condor, that are critically endangered. When one of these birds is observed in the wild, a tear forms in my eye.
So on this day after weeks of study, I was granted one of the most wonderful gifts possible......a close encounter with the Florida Scrub-Jay. And it was a very special moment that I won't forget anytime soon. I hope that the state of Florida can reverse the declining population trend of these magnificent birds.
I am linking to Wild Bird Wednesday. Here is my buddy Kathie's story about her own experience with the Florida Scrub-Jay. Las Aventuras continues.....