Friday, February 12, 2016

Colliers Mills 2/12--Red-headed Woodpecker

Turnmill Pond Dam
With the forecast for frigid weekend weather I wanted to get out this morning and try to find an unusual bird for my Bird A Day contest, because the next couple of days I'm going to have use up backyard birds, which, for the most part this year, I've avoided doing. Colliers Mills seemed a likely location and it didn't take me long to find a good one for the list: Red-headed Woodpecker behind the shooting range. I was hearing Red-bellied Woodpeckers while walking along the landing strip, but I also heard a different call. I saw one Red-bellied fly in to a tree,and then saw another woodpecker fly in a little below the first one, this bird with a full red head, black body and white rump. I walked into the field to try to get a better look (fortunately it is winter, else I'd be very hesitant to walk through so much tick potential) but this bird was not standing still--pictures were out of the question. I followed it from tree to tree for a few minutes, at one point getting a really nice look at it's white rump as it flew, but it took off to another stand of tree and was lost to me.

It was a woodpecker morning--I only missed flicker of the 6 woodpeckers you can reasonably expect to find in the county. Other cool birds were 3 Eastern Bluebirds along Hawkin Road, an American Tree Sparrow on the berm along Turnmill Pond, and a Savannah Sparrow in the high grass along Success Road. None of these birds were interesting in posing, especially for some klutz wearing 2 pairs of gloves.

Now I'm hoping for some unusual birds in the backyard, both for Bird A Day and for this weekend's Great Backyard Bird Count.

For the 3.38 miles I walked I found 23 species:
Canada Goose  4     Two f/o, two on CM Lake
Turkey Vulture  2
Red-headed Woodpecker  1    
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker  1     Hawkin Rd
Downy Woodpecker  5
Hairy Woodpecker  1     Near CM Lake
Blue Jay  5
Carolina Chickadee  3
Tufted Titmouse  4
White-breasted Nuthatch  3
Carolina Wren  1
Eastern Bluebird  3
American Robin  10
Northern Mockingbird  1
European Starling  3
Yellow-rumped Warbler  2
American Tree Sparrow  1
Dark-eyed Junco  10
White-throated Sparrow  7
Savannah Sparrow  1
Northern Cardinal  2     Grassy area around Hawkin Rd
Red-winged Blackbird  2
A real fixer upper on the property

1 comment:

  1. Hi Larry! Can you offer me some specific directions to the Red-headed Woodpecker. I had tried to find the shooting range "landing strip" with no success regarding the bird. I saw the shotgun shooting range next to the archery range, but was;t quite sure what you meant by the "landing strip". Thank you so much!