Siberian Jay (Perisoreus infaustus)

Siberian Jay

[order] PASSERIFORMES | [family] Corvidae | [latin] Perisoreus infaustus | [UK] Siberian Jay | [FR] Mesangeai imitateur | [DE] Ungluckshaher | [ES] | [NL] Taiga-gaai


Genus Species subspecies Breeding Range Breeding Range 2 Non Breeding Range
Perisoreus infaustus EU n
Perisoreus infaustus infaustus
Perisoreus infaustus maritimus
Perisoreus infaustus opicus
Perisoreus infaustus ostjakorum
Perisoreus infaustus ruthenus
Perisoreus infaustus sibericus
Perisoreus infaustus tkachenkoi
Perisoreus infaustus yakutensis

Physical charateristics

Noticeably smaller, slighter, and proportionately longer-tailed than Jay, with much shorter, more pointed bill. Smallest and most delicate of west Palearctic Corvidae; rather drab brown-grey, with rufous-chestnut near wing-bend and on under wing-coverts, rump, and sides of tail setting bird ?on fire? in flight.

Listen to the sound of Siberian Jay

[audio: Jay.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: cm wingspan max.: cm
size min.: 30 cm size max.: 32 cm
incubation min.: 18 days incubation max.: 19 days
fledging min.: 21 days fledging max.: 19 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 4  


Eurasia : North


In de broedtijd hoofdzakelijk dichte naaldbossen. Broedt vroeg in het jaar, lang voor de sneeuw is gesmolten. Buiten broedtijd vaak nabij menselijke nederzettingen.


The egg laying period normally starts in the first half of April while the terrain is still snowbound. Parents produce
a single brood per season with a variable butsmall clutch size range: 1-5. Incubation feeding by males allows females
to incubate their eggs and newly hatched chicks almost continuously. Older nestlings (> 7 days) are provided with food by both parents. Fledging takes place in mid May through early June 18-24 days after the first chick has hatched. Offspring is provided with food for about 3 weeks after fledging. Most first-year birds disperse within 8 weeks after fledging.

Feeding habits

Omnivorous all year. Captures and kills small mammals and small passerines up to size of tit; also plunders nests for eggs and nestlings. Feeds from all kinds of carrion. Takes variety of arthropods, largely insects. Plant material forms substantial portion of diet, especially various berries occurring in coniferous forest. Marked tendency to store food. Food-storing so intensive that it has been suggested that Siberian Jay overwinters successfully largely because of stores, and uses them to prepare for breeding and rearing young. Storing occurs in spring as well as in autumn and winter. Food stored in trees; typical hoarding sites are bark crevices, in lichens, or among conifer needles. Food carefully concealed and rendered almost invisible, small pieces of bark and lichens being used to cover hoarded items.


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Siberian Jay status Least Concern


Breeds across higher latitudes of west Palearctic, and is predominantly at all seasons a bird of coniferous forest, mainly of Norway spruce and Scots pine but also of larch and downy birch. Favours dense stands of forest, unmodified by man, rather than open growth. Contrasts with Jay in lack of fear of man, readily attaching itself to human travellers and their living quarters, but this has little effect on choice of habitat since normal range is largely uninhabited by people.

Distribution map

Siberian Jay distribution range map

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