Visitors having breakfast today

Northern Flicker and Cardinal visitors

Northern Flicker

Took this with my Nikon Coolpix 900. This was my first time seeing this bird and what fun to watch as it looked for ants.

Nesting Asilomar Birds

I am so lucky that I get to witness these astonishing bird interactions and activities just in passing. I can’t imagine what it would be like to monitor these birds all day long. The drama! I love Violet-green Swallows as they are very beautiful and graceful in the air but also tenacious at the nest: moms don’t leave if the box gets opened, they are scrappy when fighting with the Western Bluebirds for a home, the juveniles return to the boxes when they’re bored of foraging on their own. Just immense personality. And really understudied compared to the Tree Swallows, which have a wider range. I’d like to conduct more research on the VGSW and figure out why they have years of total nest failure and other years are successful. Someday, when I have more time. There are other images of some of my favorite park residents, which include the Western Bluebirds, Pygmy Nuthatches, and Northern Flickers. All are amazing individuals who I love.

Bundle o’ Flicker Chicks

A pile of nekkid northern flicker chicks, 8 in total. Or is it 9?

Flicker family

Moved this house last winter due to chronic vacancy and voilà, they like the new location!

Northern Flicker making nest in tree

Northern Flicker Disagreement

These two Northern Flickers sat in this tree yelling back and forth at each other for quite some time. Now they are regular visitors at our feeders.

Male Yellow-shafted Northern Flicker in my yard!!

This Male Yellow-shafted Northern Flicker isn’t a very common bird where I live. Although they are closely related to woodpeckers, and are in fact, a part of the woodpecker family, they spend most of their time on the ground feeding off beetles and ants. They are one of a few woodpeckers that migrate.

Northern Flicker -yellow-shafted form

Northern Flicker at nest site. Removing a fecal sac after feeding it’s young.

Flickers and Blue Jay

I made and put up a Flicker box in the yard. Flickers had 7 young. I was a little concerned as there were a pair of Blue Jays nesting in a Spruce 30′ away from the Flicker box. No problems, 7 Flickers fledged. The Blue Jays had 3 young,

Northern Flicker feeding her young

Northern Flicker “I’m not ready to go…”

A Northern Flicker fledged with a little help from his sister. Is she laughing after she gives him the shove-off? He flew well for about 100 feet to a tree branch, followed by dad to check on him. Sister fledged about 2 minutes later, followed by mom. I was extremely lucky to witness this event, as I had just gotten the iPhone and scope set up to capture whatever was happening at the nest box.

The other 2 or 3 siblings fledged the following morning. It was hard to tell how many nestlings were inside since they were constantly jostling for position at the hole in order to be the first to be fed when mom or dad came around.

Northern Flicker in nesting box

After we evicted this flicker from our attic, he kept trying to get back in. At night, he clung to the side of our house, under the eaves. So I built him a home of his own. I used some 12″ redwood boards, salvaged from a shed next door that was built in the early 1900’s. We hung it in a tree a few feet away from our bedroom window. His entrance faces southeast. He moved in about 10 days after we installed it.

Northern Flicker – yellow-shafted form

Flicker Baby

Parents spent days encouraging their three baby flickers to leave the nest. This guy just bleated at their calls!

Flickers grow fast

Look how these flickers have grown. It’s been a long journey to get to this point with the invasive starlings destroying flicker nests. Learn how I did it: http://www.kansasnativeplants.com/yard_birds_northernflicker.php

Baby Flickers are Talking at age 5 days old

After having starlings destroy the flickers nest last year, I became more vigilant in my trapping of starlings. It paid off this year and the flickers have 5 babies. Learn all about my experience with nesting flickers at http://www.kansasnativeplants.com/yard_birds_northernflicker.php

Nashville Flicker

Male Flicker in and on hollow tree, drumming and calling

Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Cornell Lab of Ornithology