High in the Trees

What a treat to end the year with! Barry and I had been searching for this bird to add to our life lists for a long time now. Its no wonder when considering its near threatened status as well as its severely diminished population over the last century. We had heard through the grape vine that a few Red-headed Woodpeckers had a nest cavity at one of the community parks. We had only to walk 20 yards from the parking lot before we set eyes on them. High in the trees, there they were, four of them!


A distinctly crimson head





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Their red head is so strikingly colored when compared to the rest of their body that its easy to see why the Cherokee Natives used this bird as a war symbol.


They were everywhere at once, enjoying the day and combing tree bark for small meals. Their enthusiasm was contagious, as was evident by the broad smile on Barry’s face. And while it wasn’t quite as dramatic as my recent PIWO sighting, it remained just as special. Perhaps because this time I was able to share the experience.



As Christopher McCandless once wrote (recorded in Jon Krakauer’s Into the Wild), “Happiness is only real when shared”.


A juvenile who looks to be nearly in adult plumage. The black spots give his adolescence away though.






(All images included in this and other entries on this site were taken by and belong to me)

All Images © 2013 Brian Lang

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