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September 07, 2003

A Different Feather

Had a juvenile red-headed woodpecker visit the suet feeder today for the first time, or at least I noticed him for the first time. He had the characteristic black and white wing pattern, else I would have dismissed him as a young flicker or red-bellied woodpecker.

Juvenile or not, it was the first time one of that species had been enticed to a feeder of mine. There's been a breeding pair of Red-headeds in the bottomlands behind the house since we moved in; I assume it was one of theirs.

The juvvie's visit leaves the Pileated and Red-cockaded as the only woodpecker species left for us to tempt to the feeders, neither of which I expect to see there anytime soon, if ever. Neither are resident in the immediate area, though I did see a pair of Pileateds pass through the neighborhood last spring. Red-Cockadeds aren't even found in the area, existing mostly south and east of us. Even if one did drop by, I'd have to get lucky in order to id it. Odds are I'd dismiss it as a Downy Woodpecker were I to even notice it.

What I'd like is a raptor feeder. Say a largish circle of close shorn grass, like a putting green, surrounded by a two foot fence, made of some smooth, unclimbable material. Every day, say at about three in the afternoon, I'd release six or seven white mice into it. I think eventually the neighborhood hawks would habituate themselves to a daily feeding, and there is very little more stirring that watching a hawk stoop to its prey.

After I get the hawk feeder to work, it's time for the Osprey feeder.

Posted by Bigwig at September 7, 2003 02:23 PM | TrackBack
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Comments

This spring a falcon landed on the fence. He then flew to the spirea bushes where the smaller birds congregate in the lower inner branches. The upper branches were too springy for his weight. He looked like a drunken sailor just off the ship and still reeling from the waves. Very comical!

Needless to say, he did not catch any of little birds and I swear they were mocking the falcon.

Posted by: Al Bee at September 7, 2003 09:07 PM
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