Eurasian jay

(Garrulus glandarius)
Resident in the area. A forest species, lives in areas with deciduous or coniferous forests.
Sophia Siggiridou_Kostas Vidakis, MSc

Distribution of the species

Common resident in Paggaio. The local breeding population is smaller than the 2% of the national population (estimated at 250,000–330,000 pairs). The conservation status of the local population, which is not isolated within its wider distribution range, is considered excellent. It is found mainly in the broadleaved forests of Paggaio, from lower altitudes (oak, hornbeam and other broadleaf species) to higher altitudes (beech forests). It can also be observed in high altitude shrublands of the area or at lower altitudes in areas where groups of trees are found near forest ecosystems.

Description of the species (biological and ecological features)

Small corvid with impressive plumage. With pink-gray-brown body, white neck, stocky black beak, thick mustache, whitish crown with black spots. Wings black-and-white, blue, gray-brown, long tail, black with white base. Distant, difficult to approach. It flies straight but irregularly with small ups and downs. Caches its favorite food, acorns, in the fall, to find them in the winter. In doing so, it also helps in the regeneration of oak forests, transporting acorns for storage at distances of up to 20 kilometers! It imitates the calls of its predators, mainly the common buzzard and the northern goshawk. Its voice is loud and strident. When Eurasian jays spot a predator, a real commotion breaks out in the forest!

Resident in the area. A forest species, lives in areas with deciduous or coniferous forests. There is a recent increase of its presence in orchards, olive groves, and residential lowland areas. It usually nests in trees, but also in shrubs. It finds its food in the trees but also on the ground. It is an omnivorous bird, feeding on invertebrates, including harmful insects, acorns, beech seeds, berries and, especially during the breeding season, eggs and chicks of other birds, bats and small rodents.

The species does not face any significant threat. However, due to its large distribution and the fact that it is often found in the forest-and-crop ecotone, it is often persecuted by growers who consider it a “pest species” due to the damage it causes to agricultural crops.

Conservation status

Least Concern.

Conservation state

Protected under the 2009/147/EU Directive (Annex II). Listed as Least Concern in Greece and in Europe, by the Greek Red Data Book and the IUCN correspondingly. Not included in a SPEC category (European species of conservation concern) by BirdLife International.