Family Crows and Jays (Corvidae)

Least Concern

Purplish Jay (Cyanocorax cyanomelas)


French: Geai bleu-noir German: Purpurblaurabe Spanish: Chara morada

Pica cyanomelas


, 1818,





Extreme SE Peru (Cuzco and Madre de Dios), N & E Bolivia, Paraguay, SW Brazil (S Rondônia, Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, SW Goiás, extreme W São Paulo and extreme W Paraná), N Argentina (Salta, E Formosa, E Chaco, N Corrientes, N Santa Fe and Misiones) and extreme NW Uruguay (Artigas).

Descriptive notes

37 cm; 185–210 g. Short black frontal crest and nasal tuft, and stiff feathers on lores, malar region and around eye. Has anterior half of crown and side of head sepia... read more


Vocal repertoire seems small, primarily of harsh sounds. Repeated harsh "jar-jar-jar-jar... read more


Deciduous forest, gallery forest and adjacent areas of scrub and secondary forest, with xerophytic... read more

Food and feeding

Invertebrates, fruits and berries; probably takes contents of other birds' nests; probably feeds also on carrion. Group of six... read more


Eggs recorded from early Oct to early Dec in Paraguay and Nov in Argentina. One nest described, built with twigs and creeper stems, lined... read more



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally fairly common. Locally common in Paraguay and Argentina; rare in Peru. It is possible that deforestation has allowed an... read more

Recommended citation

dos Anjos, L. (2020). Purplish Jay (Cyanocorax cyanomelas). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 28 February 2020).