Sunday, July 24, 2011
Baby Pictures: Northern Flicker
Blogger's "Next Blog" link at the top of their pages makes it possible to randomly explore other Blogger sites. I always hope to discover some new nature blogs. Instead, I seem to always end up mired in other peoples' baby pictures. No offense, but it's not what I'm looking for. In response, here are some of my own.
These are the fledged young of Northern Flickers (Colaptes auratus) caught by the Birdcam at various ages. Mom always seems to be nearby. This is a good example of what a useful tool the Birdcam really is. It catches scenes I have never seen in real life. It's nice to get these unique shots of one of my favorite birds.
Northern Flickers occur in two color forms defined by the undersides of their wing and tail feathers. While I do see both pure Red-shafted and Yellow-shafted birds in the yard, most of my Flickers are Red/Yellow hybrids with orange shafts. This year's crop of chicks seems to be continuing that pattern. This male youngster sports a hint of a nape chevron usually seen in the Yellow-shafted race. His red moustache is a characteristic of the Red-shafted form. The blush on his forehead is unique.
Northern Flickers are as charming as they are beautiful. They like to make short drumrolls on the metal chimney cap of my fireplace, my deck posts and even the side of the garage. In the spring, this is a display to attract mates. At other times it announces territorial rights. They don't do any damage, and it makes life at the edge of the forest more interesting. Enjoy this gallery of Northern Flicker baby pictures.