Brown Jay Psilorhinus morio

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Corvidae
  • Polytypic: 4 subspecies
  • Authors: Matthew F. Jones

Diet and Foraging


Main food taken

Brown Jays are generalist foragers (Williams and Hale 2006). They consume fruit (especially Castilloa elastica, Passiflora, and catkin-like fruits of Cecropia), banana and balsa flower nectra, arthropods, and small vertebrates, including lizards, frogs, and other birds (Skutch 1960, Kantak 1979, Haemig 1989, dos Anjos 2009).

Quantitative analysis

Observations from May-August 1975 in Campeche, Mexico found Ehretia tinifolia (58.9%), Ficus padifolia (23.1%), Talisia olivaeformis (12.0%), and Metopium browneii (6.0%) comprise the frugivorous portion of the diet of Brown Jay (Kantak 1979).

Food capture and consumption 

To capture insects, Brown Jays often glean from foliage, probe bark or rotten wood, and occasionally sally (dos Anjos 2009). In addition Brown Jays are opportunistic followers of army ants (Eciton burchelli) (Haemig 1989), consuming arthropods and frogs in mixed army ant-following flocks.

Foraging Behavior

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Recommended Citation

Jones, M. F. (2012). Brown Jay (Psilorhinus morio), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.