The blue jay belongs to the family of crows, and it is called the blue jay because it is characterized by its blue feathers mixed with white. There are about 35 species of it. It looks like a crow and is large. It is a daring bird that has a loud and sharp voice. It lives in wooded and rural places.
The bluebird feeds on nuts, fruits, and seeds. It also searches for grasshoppers, caterpillars, beetles, and small birds to hunt, as these preys are a hearty and appetizing meal for it.
Bluebirds often attack small birds and steal eggs. They rarely attack large adult chickens. If the bluebird knows the location of your barn, it will constantly respond to it, causing a lot of loss in the chicken flock. So how can these birds be deterred? This is exactly what we will discuss in detail in the next lines.
How To Keep Blue Jays Out Of The Chicken Coop?
There are 5 main tips you need to know to keep blue jays out of your chicken coop:
- Coop Insurance (Nets – Cover – Perches removal)
- CD Hanging
- Trick Them With A Decoy
- Make Some Noise
- Scare Them With Their Predator
Now, let’s explain how can you apply each one of these tips in your barn:
1. Coop Insurance
Use A Bird Net
The coop must be surrounded by a tight wire net to prevent the entry of the blue jay. You can use regular chicken wire or hardware cloth to surround your coop. You can learn more about hardware cloth from here.
Installation Of The Vent Cover
A vent hood must be fitted as it is necessary to prevent blue jay and other small birds from nesting inside the coop openings.
Perches must be removed From the roof of the chicken coop so as not to draw the attention of the bluejays to the presence of chickens in this area. and not allow a place for the bluejays to sit on it and observe your chicken. So the perches are like tall ceiling columns or eaves that must be removed.
Move Any Feeders
If you keep any wild birds or would like to give them food. you should place the wild bird feeders away from the chicken feeders so that there is no chance of seeing the chickens and disturbing them.
Make Sure There Are No Bird Nests
It will be necessary to walk around the chicken coop to check it out and determine if any blue jays are nesting above your coop or in the surrounding areas. If you find any nests, remove the nests and remove any materials that could be used to build a new nest.
The coop must be inspected constantly to find any defect such as any damaged or broken material in the structure of the barn that allows the entry of wild birds such as blue jays. So check the integrity of the fence, doors, and nets and make sure they are free of any holes or weak parts. If there are any holes or defects, they must be repaired immediately.
Do Not Leave Any Food Outside
If you have an uncovered patio for chickens to roam, you should not leave large quantities of food and water in it. just put enough for your chicken during the time they will spend in the yard. As leaving food is an incentive to encourage blue jays to come and devour food, even if it is not their favorite food, they do not leave this easy opportunity.
It is also recommended to replace any open feeders with a Lever-operated chicken feeder. As lever feeders are very useful as blue jays cannot eat from them. Because it is designed such that a small lever must be pressed to release the feed, and since the Blue jays are light in weight, it will not be able to activate the feeder.
2. CD Hanging
It’s a very cheap and affordable way to deter bluejays. You can hang your old CDs around the barn, either by stringing them from tree branches around the garden, or by making poles out of wood or whatever you have on hand to hang them.
The compressed discs capture the sun’s rays and reflect them, and as they rotate in the breeze with the movement of the air, these discs emit flashes of dim and brilliant light. These flashes confuse and scare the blue jays and make them run away and avoid your coop.
This method is usually used to deter hawks from chicken coops and has also been successful in deterring blue jays. If you do not have old CDs, you can buy any reflective discs to protect birds from online sites. There are multiple shapes and types designed with the same idea to deter predatory birds.
3. Trick Them With A Decoy
Although blue jays are intelligent predatory birds, you can deceive them simply because they also have fears. They are threatened by owls, cats, and large predators.
You will find them moving away from any threatened area because they do not like to be prey. You can use any predator-like dummies like cats or owls, whether they are made of wood, metal, or plastic. The important thing is that they look real.
For more accuracy of the trick, you can buy an owl decoy that rotates its head, as the movement of the head helps to deceive the bluebirds more. they will think that the owl is watching them and preparing to pounce on them!
What a Manipulate the minds of these birds but it really could be the way to reduce the risk and protect the chickens. But anyway, it doesn’t last long as the Blue Jays are incredibly smart, and it won’t take long to find out until they realize the owl is fake! You can change the position of the decoy frequently so that it is more realistic like a real bird moving and changing its position. so that the blue jays do not realize it is fake quickly and get used to it and eventually lose their effectiveness.
4. Make Some Noise
The noise around the chicken coop will confuse the bluejays and keep them away from the coop. You can use wind chimes around your yard to deter the bluebirds. This would be a temporary solution for deterring blue jays as that once they get used to these sounds and noises, they are no longer afraid of them.
5. Scare Them With Their Predator
As we mentioned, a fake decoy can be used to keep blue jays away. But having a real animal that threatens them may be more effective.
You can simply have a cat around your barn. If you play with the cat, love it, and give it enough food, it is not likely to attack your chickens, especially adult chickens. But rather will attack blue jays. Birds such as bluejays are good prey for cats, so they will chase them and prevent them from reaching your coop.