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Cayenne Jay - BirdForum Opus

Photo by megan perkins
Escalera, SE Venezuela, November 2008
Cyanocorax cayanus



  • Stiffed feathers on nasal tuft and forehead create a short, inconspicuous frontal crest
  • Black forehead, forecrown, side of head and side of neck
  • White nape, posterior crown and mantle, all slightly tinged blue
  • Small white spot above and another one below the eye
  • White malar patch, broad below eye
  • Upperparts and wings drab brown, somehow tinged indigo-blue
  • Indigo-blue tail with broad white tips
  • Sepia throat and upper breast, almost black on some birds
  • White or whitish-yellow rest of underparts
  • Pale blue to yellowish-white eye
  • Black bill and legs

Sexes similar, juveniles are duller than adults.

Similar species

Similar to White-tailed Jay or White-naped Jay but ranges don't overlap.


Found from southeast Venezuela east to Guyana, French Guiana, Suriname and northern Brazil (Roraima south to Manaus and east to northern Amapa).
Fairly common to common in parts of its range.


This is a monotypic species[1].
Probably closely related to White-tailed Jay.


Savanna forest. Avoids interior of forest and also found in gardens or town.


Often found in small flocks.
Feeds on beetles, other insects, berries and fruits. Forages in canopy.
Breeding season from December to March. A communal breeder. The nest is a large cup, made of twigs. It's placed 2 - 5m above the ground often in an isolated tree. Lays 4 eggs.
A sedentary species.


  1. Clements, JF. 2009. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to December 2009. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019.
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2009. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 14: Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553507

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