A young, disgruntled looking Blue Jay was hopping around the cabin's property last weekend. Every time someone walked by or its parents flew over, it'd open its mouth wide open begging for food (and increasing its funny, curmudgeonly look).
Being on the ground is typical for fledgling birds; many of whom leave the nest before they can fly. Blue Jays, cardinals, robins are some of the most common species to do this.
Note that the fledgling is just developing its flight feathers and tail feathers. They simply do not have room to do this packed into a nest with other brood members. So, they flop out of the nest around day 14 and spend 6-8 days on the ground learning to look for food, how to evade predators and practicing short flights. The whole time the parents will be around, feeding and protecting them.
In about six days this little guy should be flying, harrassing its parents at our feeders!