The grey jay (Perisoreus canadensis) is a bird of the crow family,
Corvidae. It is found in boreal forests of North America north to the
tree line, and in the Rocky Mountains subalpine zone south to New Mexico
and Arizona. A fairly large songbird, it has pale grey underparts,
darker grey upperparts, and a grey-white head with a darker grey nape.
Grey jays live on permanent territories in coniferous forests, surviving
in winter months on food cached throughout their territory in warmer
periods. The birds form monogamous mating pairs, accompanied by a
juvenile from the previous season. Grey jays adapt to human activity in
their territories and may approach humans for food. The species is
associated with mythological figures of several First Nations cultures,
including Wisakedjak, a benevolent figure whose name was anglicized to
whisky jack, another name for the bird. In 2016, an expert panel and
online poll conducted by Canadian Geographic magazine recommended the
grey jay as the national bird of Canada.
Today’s selected anniversaries:
During the Xuanwu Gate Incident, Prince Li Shimin led his forces
to assassinate his rival brothers in a coup for the imperial throne of
the Tang dynasty.
The combined forces of the Scottish Covenanters and the English
Parliamentarians defeated the Royalists at the Battle of Marston Moor,
one of the decisive encounters of the English Civil War.
The French frigate Méduse ran aground off the coast of
today’s Mauritania, with the survivors escaping on a makeshift raft,
which was depicted in Théodore Géricault’s painting The Raft of the
White residents of East St. Louis, Illinois, burned sections of
the city and shot black inhabitants as they escaped the flames.
Aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan
disappeared over the Pacific Ocean during an attempt to make a
Wiktionary’s word of the day:
(archaic) Cheeky, impudent, saucy.
Wikiquote quote of the day:
I feared that the enemy might have nearly surrounded the Little
Round Top, and only a desperate chance was left for us. My ammunition
was soon exhausted. My men were firing their last shot and getting ready
to “club” their muskets. It was imperative to strike before we were
struck by this overwhelming force in a hand-to-hand fight, which we
could not probably have withstood or survived. At that crisis, I ordered
the bayonet. The word was enough.
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