Let the past sleep, but let it sleep in the sweet embrace of Christ, and let us go on into the invincible future with Him. (Oswalt Chambers)

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Wednesday Wings - Yellow Shafted Flicker

Imagine my delight Sunday when I caught a glimpse of yellow on a big bird at the suet feeder, looked up, and saw a female Flicker.

Of course I grabbed the camera, even knowing the window needed washing.

As soon as she flew away I grabbed the window cleaner and went outside to shine up the glass and refill the suet feeder hoping she'd be back.

She did come back and wasn't shy about using her large, sharp beak to gobble down large wads of suet. The other birds stayed out of her way.

Here's a more dignified picture as she rested a second between bites.

A few Flicker facts:
  • A large woodpecker, 12-14 inches long.
  • Normally insect feeds on the ground.
  • Favorite food is ants.
  • Has a two inch long sticky tongue to lap up ants.
  • Nests in a cavity high up in the forest tree tops.
  • Brings ants to the hatchlings.

She was nice enough to turn her head so I could get a good picture of the red V on the back of her neck. The males have the same markings with the addition of a black streak placed like a mustache.


stringplay said...

I just enjoy your blog SO much! I love all the bird photos and always enjoy seeing your socks. Thanks from a fellow Erma Bombeck lover!

Judy said...

Oh, you are SO blessed to have such an abundance of bird friends!

I've never seen a flicker. Your photos are GREAT!

Judy S. said...

Great photos! These birds have amazing beaks and just love to make holes in wood siding. I don't think ours are yellow shafted but they are close relatives.

Janice in GA said...

Do those birds range down to GA? I saw one a while back, I think. The dramatic spotting on the breast and the red on the neck caught my eye. I didn't recognize it at all, though I'm not much of a bird person anyway.

I came home and spent quite a while on the internet trying to identify it from a fairly short, not too close look with my eyes full of floaters. :/

Susan said...

Great pics! I've seen those birds around here in the summer but didn't know what they were called. They are very noisy in the spring when it's mating season, drumming on the metal street light cover near by!

Sherilan said...

Help! I knit a raglan sweater with Cascade 220 superwash (fit just right), but when I soaked it and put it out to dry, it stretched. Any suggestions for salvaging?

Anonymous said...

Those are fantastic pictures of the flicker. Thank you for sharing!

Diane K said...

I love your bird pictures. We too have flickers, but I haven't seen any yet. The sightings of woodpeckers have increased so maybe I'll see one soon. I only hope I can get the beautiful pictures you capture.

I've started a pair of socks using your basketweave rib pattern. I love the look and they are nice and stretchy. Thanks so much for sharing the pattern with us.

goldwman said...

OMG! A Flicker. We have a beach house on Fire Island, NY...a barrier Island south of Long Island that is famous for Bird Watching in the fall as hundreds of birds fly south for the winter....One year we had Flickers around our house. I had never seen one before and ran to the bird book so I could Identify it. What a thrill. And then there are the Monarch Butterflys heading to Mexico....Nature it's a wonderful thing! Thanks for sharing.

bloberry said...

Wonderful! I've yet to see a Flicker at my feeder, but I do see them on the local trail. What fun!

Sheri said...

Which is bigger, the Flicker or the Pileated Woodpecker? First time I saw a Pileated in our trees I thought it was a chicken. Great pictures!
Sheri in GA (formerly RI)

Melissa said...

How exciting that you have a new bird to look at! She was so nice to pose for you so you could share her with us!

Alwen said...

That first photo! Wow!