The Gray Jay, also known as Canada Jay or Whisky Jay, was recently awarded the title of Canada’s National Bird. The selection process was quite intensive, spanning a two-year period and 50 000 votes!
While I was not aware of the contest until after the official decision, I love that it was taken so seriously. And after learning a bit about the Gray Jay, I am pleased to report that I agree. The Gray Jay, is in fact, a fabulous bird to represent the fine country of Canada!
It’s smart, friendly and hardy, thus nicely represents our most cherished qualities as Canadians. It can only be found in Canada but lives in each province and territory. And get this, it incubates eggs in the -30 celsius weather of February!
It has the same brain to body ratio as dolphins and chimpanzees-which means almost the same as humans. And because it is neither hunted or endangered, it can serve as an indicator of boreal and mountain forest health in the coming years across the whole country. So, there you have it. The Gray Jay is the bomb…or perhaps more appropriately, the Gray Jay is the yarnbomb!
After my yarnbombing adventure through SEA, it feels only right that I celebrate being back home by making something special and distinctively Canadian. A yarnbomb for ‘Canada’ so to say! So, here she be, the Gray Jay in all her knitted glory.
I was inspired by the passion surrounding the designation of ‘Canada’s National Bird’ and happy to learn that she can indeed be found here in Twillingate. I even found this handy site that shows you where Gray Jays were last spotted around the island; virtual bird watching! I used 100% Canadian wool, followed this amazing, slightly modified pattern and stuffed it with plastic bags, as is now tradition.
It was installed on February 20th at the entrance to Twillingate’s hospital and covered in ice the next morning. The Gray Jay is my first yarnbomb of 2017 and I’m happy to note that the knitted version appears to stand up to the icy elements just as well as the real thing.
How do you feel about the Gray Jay representing Canada? Were your feathers ruffled by the official decision?
I love hearing from you so comment below or reach out through social media. Also please share this post with your crafty, bird loving, Canadian friends. I’ve got big plans that involve a big gang, so would be really grateful if you helped spread the word!
-Knit well, be well.