Woodpeckers Visiting

photos of male female downy woodpeckers by Arun Shanbhag

Cleaned and fertilized the yard in April; last year I cleaned the yard in June. Within 2 days of putting out the suet feeder we had a birds visiting. Cross-checking with the Audubon field guide, I realized our visitors were Downy Woodpeckers. Every morning as I sip chai, I can see the birds pecking away; then they flit between the oak and walnut trees.

The males have a bright red dash on the nape, have stronger and longer beaks that permit them to pull out ants or wood-boring beetles. The females, sans red, have smaller softer beaks with which they pry the bark and pick up ants or insects. So they go after different food types and don’t compete.

And have you guys watched this live video from the bald eagles’ nest in Decorah? Take a peek as those chicks are growing fast. As one of my friends cautioned, “Arun, my productivity has dropped since you sent me that link.”

Here are some of majestic bald eagles I shot in Alaska. Updates from the Hawk Family outside my office window (from last year).


Here is the female woodpecker doing acrobatics at the suet feeder.
photos of male female downy woodpeckers by Arun Shanbhag
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