Florida scrub jay banding

Volusia County is in the midst of a countywide project banding Florida scrub jays, in the hopes of individually marking as many of these birds as possible.

Banding a scrub jay involves putting permanent “bracelets” on the bird’s legs, just above the foot. Each temporarily captured scrub jay is given a numbered U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service aluminum band with three additional color bands:  one color band on the bird’s left leg that indicates the bird’s banding location, and two additional color bands that are specific to that individual bird. The yellow and the white bands indicate scrub jays that were banded at Lyonia Preserve, red bands indicate birds banded at Blue Spring State Park, and green bands indicate birds banded at other county locations.

Total handling time is minimal, and all individuals who band the scrub jays have permits from the appropriate agencies. Once a scrub jay is banded, we can follow its movement and identify population trends. As the scrub jay’s habitat continues to be developed, the information gathered from these banding efforts will be critical for making scientifically based conservation efforts in Volusia County. 

If you observe a banded scrub jay, please call Volusia County Environmental Management to notify us of that bird’s location. We also would be very appreciative if you would contact Volusia County upon observing any unbanded scrub jay, so that we can add that bird to our banding efforts. Please help us to conserve the Florida scrub jay, the only bird found exclusively in Florida and a flagship species for the rapidly disappearing Florida scrub ecosystem.

Ginger Adair

Kathy Ebding
Admin Coordinator II