Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)
When first I saw this jay it was obviously very heathy, the beak hadn't become quite so long yet. From other views I had of it, I assume it was hatched this way - doesn't seem to be from an injury. It was very capable of eating almost anything - would chop out pieces of things, including peanuts, sunflower seed and more, in the standard jay way, scoop it up with it's lower beak and toss it back into it's throat. Over a period of two months or so (March, April), it gradually began to have more trouble eating as the upper and lower manibles grew longer. Its feathers began to get very ragged (not able to preen properly) and although I really never saw it in weakened state, I could tell it was going downhill.
And then I never saw it again.
I guess maybe on second thought, though, it wasn't hatched this way, because this was a fully mature bird, not this year's youngster...so whatever caused the curvature in the beak was later in it's life, though I still don't think it was from an injury.
This message was edited May 24, 2010 11:00 AM