Please feel free to comment, correct me if I am wrong, or provide helpful tips of any kind

Nature in it's glory

Nature in it's glory

Jul 5, 2012

Northern Flicker feeding young

The past few of weeks have been rather drenching, with rain pouring down every day, almost all day long. Not that I'm complaining, we really needed the rain.  However, I had plans to take videos of a pair of Downy Woodpeckers feeding their young.  I discovered at the end of last week, that the nest I had found to observe has since been abandoned.  Hopefully the baby woodpeckers fledged successfully and are now surviving nicely on their own.
Downy Woodpecker feeding young
Parent removing the waste
Parent rushing off to gather more food

I did manage to get in a couple of enjoyable hours of bird watching this past weekend.  However, this time of year most birds are difficult to spot, they are very  busy gathering food for their young, much quicker in their flight, and somewhat secretive besides, no doubt to protect the location of their nests.  When I do catch sight of them, they usually have a beak full of insects to carry back to the nest.  And I did catch sight of several birds in just this way. 

The highlight of this outing however, was the Northern Flicker parents feeding their fledglings in the tree tops.  I had stepped into a dense part of the little forest to try and spot a singing bird, when I caught sight of a dark shadowy bird figure with a red head, which was clumsily moving around in some bushes.  This turned out to be a fledgeling Northern Flicker.

The parent and the fledgeling
The Fledgeling
Notice the not quite finished look and the shorter tail of this fledgeling
Northern Flicker parent
The moment that I realized that I was viewing some fledgling flickers was made sweeter by the fact that I really didn't expect to see them.  I have never seen Northern Flickers nesting in the little forest.  In fact, I usually see Northern Flickers only in spring and fall.  So when I caught sight of  the parent feeding the fledgeling I was absolutely delighted and totally fascinated.

Opening wide in anticipation
Parent feeding fledgeling
Is that all?
There wasn't a lot of light under the trees for my first series of photos.  However I lucked out when I caught sight of them a second time in a part of the forest with much better light.  So I'm really glad that these birds were not stationary. 

As far as I could tell there were two fledgelings, and the parents were busy taking it in turn to feed them both.  The fledgelings seemed never to stay still for very long, and made their own attempts at finding food, but were still fairly clumsy.   Between the first and second sighting, I watched them for perhaps half and hour before they all disappeared into the denser part of the forest.  It was both an awesome and delightful experience.


No comments:

Post a Comment