Blue Jays: Numerous in the Hudson Valley And Not Really Blue
So what if I told you that Blue Jays aren't really blue, would you laugh and ask if I was color blind? Turns out Blue Jays aren't blue. As a matter of fact most birds that appear blue aren't blue, but let's just stick to Blue Jays for this article. I was not aware of this weird fact myself until today.
Earlier this afternoon I saw a Facebook post from the New York State Department of Environment Conservation (NYS DEC) that was sharing a fun fact. That fact was that Blue Jays aren't really blue. This prompted me to google this bit of information and it turns out that Blue Jays are indeed not blue at all. They are a completely different color which you wouldn't notice or even be able to see until you look at their feathers from underneath.
I found an online article posted by recconnectwithnature.org that called it a trick of nature. The article explained that blue is a rare pigment in nature and that the blue we see on a Blue Jay is actually due to a complex series visual tricks. Basically it comes down to an optical illusion that would have most Vegas magicians stump as to how they did it.
So the blue in a Blue Jay isn't really there. It is pockets of air and something called light scattering and again Reconnect with Nature explains it really well but that leaves us with the question, so what color is a Blue Jay? The answer is Brown.
For the record Crows and Ravens are Black and Cardinals are red.