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Canada jay (Perisoreus canadensis)
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Corvidae
Genus: Perisoreus
Bonaparte, 1831
Type species
Corvus canadensis[1]
Linnaeus, 1766

The genus Perisoreus is a very small genus of jays from the Boreal regions of North America and Eurasia from Scandinavia to the Asian seaboard. An isolated species also occurs in north-western Sichuan of China. They belong to the Passerine order of birds in the family Corvidae. Species of Perisoreus jays are most closely related to the genus Cyanopica.[2]

The genus was introduced by the French zoologist Charles Lucien Bonaparte in 1831.[3] The type species was subsequently designated as the Canada jay.[4] The name of the genus may come from the Ancient Greek perisōreuō "to heap up" or "bury beneath". Alternatively it may be from the Latin peri- "very" or "exceedingly" and sorix, a bird of augury dedicated to Saturn.[5]


The genus contains three species.[6]

Genus PerisoreusBonaparte, 1831 – three species
Common name Scientific name and subspecies Range Size and ecology IUCN status and estimated population
Canada jay

Perisoreus canadensis
(Linnaeus, 1766)

Nine subspecies
  • P. c. albescens
  • P. c. bicolor
  • P. c. canadensis
  • P. c. capitalis
  • P. c. griseus
  • P. c. nigricapillus
  • P. c. obscurus
  • P. c. pacificus
  • P. c. sanfordi
North America north to the tree line, and in the Rocky Mountains subalpine zone south to New Mexico and Arizona
Map of range



26,000,000[7] Decrease

Siberian jay

Perisoreus infaustus
(Linnaeus, 1758)

Five subspecies
north Eurasia
Map of range



4,000,000 - 7,999,999[8] Decrease

Sichuan jay

Perisoreus internigrans
(Thayer & Bangs, 1912)
China Size:



2,500 - 9,999[9] Decrease


  1. ^ "Corvidae". The Trust for Avian Systematics. Retrieved 2023-07-16.
  2. ^ Ericson, Per G. P.; Jansén, Anna-Lee; Johansson, Ulf S.; Ekman, Jan (2005). "Inter-generic relationships of the crows, jays, magpies and allied groups (Aves: Corvidae) based on nucleotide sequence data" (PDF). Journal of Avian Biology. 36 (3): 222–234. CiteSeerX doi:10.1111/j.0908-8857.2001.03409.x.
  3. ^ Bonaparte, Charles Lucien (1831). "Saggio di una distribuzione metodica degli Animali Vertebrati di Carlo Luciano Bonaparte principe di Musignano". Giornale Arcadico di Scienze, Lettre ed Arti. 49: 3–77 [42].
  4. ^ Mayr, Ernst; Greenway, James C. Jr, eds. (1962). Check-list of birds of the world. Vol. 15. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Museum of Comparative Zoology. p. 235.
  5. ^ Jobling, J.A. (2018). del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J.; Christie, D.A.; de Juana, E. (eds.). "Key to Scientific Names in Ornithology". Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  6. ^ Gill, Frank; Donsker, David, eds. (2018). "Crows, mudnesters, birds-of-paradise". World Bird List Version 8.1. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  7. ^ BirdLife International (2016). "Perisoreus canadensis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2016: e.T22705783A94035434. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T22705783A94035434.en.
  8. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Perisoreus infaustus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
  9. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Perisoreus internigrans". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2013.

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