Apparent downward trend continues for Florida scrub-jays, according to 2010 Jay Watch report

The Nature Conservancy has released the findings from volunteers’ extensive 2010 survey of jay populations.

Altamonte Springs, Florida | January 28, 2011


WHAT: Access the Conservancy’s 2010 report on the status of Florida’s only endemic bird, the threatened Florida scrub-jay.

KEY POINTS: The report — which reflects the hard work and dedication last year of 280 Jay Watch volunteers — shows that the sociable jay continues to struggle. 

  • Of 63 scrub-jay sites surveyed in the early 1990s and last year, 54 percent had fewer jay groups in 2010. Fifteen of those sites had no jays—that’s three more sites with no jays than in 2009.
  • There were bright spots: The Arbuckle tract of the Lake Wales Ridge State Forest in Polk County, where there has been controlled burning to improve scrub condition in recent years, showed an increase in the number of jay groups, for example.

The scrub-jay was designated as a threatened species in 1987 due to loss and degradation of the Florida scrub habitat upon which the jay depends.

Data generated from Jay Watch is used to plan for controlled burning and vegetation reduction to help restore that habitat.

The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at

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Jill Austin

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