It is snowing again on the mountain. I had just come in from picking the new metal birdfeeders up off of the ground, putting them back together (sigh, the never ending battle with the bears. Aren’t they suppose to be sleeping?) and filling them. Standing at the kitchen sink contemplating buying more of the broomstick hooks to get the feeders higher in the trees, I saw a flash of red. A Red-bellied Woodpecker was flying to a feeder, selecting a sunflower seed then hopping to the tree to peck it open. I took these shots through the glass of the French door to the deck. (Notice the White-breasted Nuthatch on the right of the tree? That was a surprise.)
He methodically hopped back and forth from feeder to tree for several minutes;
when, from out of the swirling snow, another male Red-bellied flew straight at him, taking him by surprise. They both flew off unscathed and did not come back. I have never seen this behavior. Heck, I have never seen two male Red-bellied Woodpeckers in my backyard although I have a resident pair that nest on the property. I guess one was an interloper.
Have you seen woodpeckers brawling?
Filed under backyard, Photos
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Check out other skies at SkyWatch.
Out of the corner of my eye, I happened to see the flash of white on wings. Tracking the bird to a tree, I saw it stash an acorn in a tiny acorn-sized hole. I walked around the tree looking it up and down. The whole tree was a pantry full of carefully stored food. Acorn Woodpeckers do the darnest thing. I have seen them in both California and Arizona. They are easy to see not only in trees but also drilling in telephone poles along the highway. I love that.
My favorite woodpecker actually is the Pileated. What’s yours?
Filed under Photos, Travel
I sat gazing out the big colonial windows in my kitchen with my cat, Winkie perched on one knee. She saw the bird before I did. A disheveled young Downy Woodpecker landed on one of the green metal lawn chairs. She pecked at the metal repeatedly, trying her darnest to get a meal. She obviously hadn’t got the whole wood part of woodpecker down yet. After several minutes of jabbing the chair then hitching up to try again she gave up and flew to the nearest oak. She pecked at that for a while, before flying off to try another oak.
Now, I know that woodpeckers will peck at houses and I have heard of them banging away at eaves and drainpipes…but metal chairs? Huh. The things ya see.
Filed under backyard, Photos