I report on an incident involving a Steller's Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri) and an American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) at a feeding platform. After repeated failures to drive the crow from the platform by scolding, approaching and diving at it, the jay flew into a bush where it worked vigorously to break off a stick. Having broken off the twig, the jay, with stick in bill, approached the crow and thrust the pointed stick at it. The crow lunged at the jay which then dropped the stick. The crow picked up the stick and flew after the jay. This appears to be the first case of a bird holding an object and using it in a weapon-like way during an aggressive action against another bird.
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Vol. 119 • No. 1