Cardinals, Magnolia and WoodPecker

magnolia bud 2012 with strip of barn red in the back
Magnolia tree is starting to show buds. The red strip behind is paint trim on a shed. You can see 2011 magnolia photos here – last year I added a fancy pale blue background.

cardinal in backyard tree
At first I thought the cardinals were gone for the season, but on Sunday morning quite a few showed up at about 8 am, swooping around my backyard.

cardinal upright in tree

cardinal magnolia tree
One even landed in my neighbor’s magnolia tree.

back of woodpecker in tree
I heard a loud noise: peck, peck, peck. I went and got my camera and managed to capture this guy in photos. He has a red spot on his head. He pecks in a rhythm, then he stops and looks around. Then he pecks in the exact same rhythm, and then he stops and looks around.

hairy woodpecker with red spot on his head

I think he may be a downy or hairy woodpecker – see the red spot on his head? Eileen says he’s a downy woodpecker.

Nature Notes

23 thoughts on “Cardinals, Magnolia and WoodPecker

  • We get woodpeckers in our garden quite a lot, but a different type. We occasionally get a heron too, attracted by our neighbour’s pond. Last week there was a pheasant or grouse here, which was very surprising. I tried to take a photo, but discovered that my camera isn’t working.

    • Nice to hear from you, Daniel. Hope you get your camera fixed! I think sharing bird photos is a great way to connect with others. Hard to get into arguments over nature shots. Although I suppose some might find a way…

  • What beautiful birds – we get a woodpecker in the woods around similar to that one – but I especially like your cardinal – have a good week – Jane UK

    • I wandered around the tree, and I kept trying different angles. Also, I discovered I got a better capture if I waited until he stopped pecking.

  • Oh a woodpecker..It looks like a downy woodpecker to me. Downy and Hairy was similar,but the hairy woodpecker is bigger. The males have a red spot and the females have none. So this is a boy. The cardinals should stay in your area year round…It is an exciting time of year.. You may even get a woodpecker to visit your feeder for some sunflower seeds although they come more readily to suet feeder…Michelle

    • Ok now I am wondering..hard to tell from angle..but maybe it is a hairy. Hairy woodpeckers are good sized and downy are much smaller…Hmmm..looking at bill..hairy…I am going to say hairy woodpecker based on bill…

      http://www.birdwatching.com/tips/downy_and_hairy_woodpeckers.html
      web site-Another clue is the white outer tail feathers. On the hairy woodpecker, the outer feathers are pure white. On the downy, there are usually black or gray spots along the sides of the white outer tail feathers. You can just make out the dark spots on the side of the downy woodpecker’s tail in the photo above

    • I put up a suet feeder a few months ago, but it became field day for the squirrels. They would hang upside down and gnaw at it for hours. No more suet for them, sorry, squirrels!

      • That is a problem..I have special upside-down ones that deter them or I hang them on the deck..but there will be plenty of insects for the birds soon with this warm weather

  • What beauties, Leora. I love the cardinal captures, the red popping out within the branches. The woodpeckers…they are something else.

    Re the suet…I use a metal holder with small openings. The squirrels were never able to get into it.

    • My squirrels hang upside down on the metal holder! It’s a funny scene, since it’s on a branch of a tree. I give up on that one. Didn’t see one bird taking an interest. They prefer the seeds in my feeder.

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