I heard this Red-bellied Woodpecker way before I finally spotted him. I waited and got this reward.
I didn’t have a great view when I first spotted this pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers. I was pretty sure the one on the right zipped into that hole while I maneuvered around the tree between us.
I watched for him to come out before turning my attention to the other one as he was pecking on the tree. Then I could hear the second one calling.
The question then was to keep watching the first subject or risk missing some action there and look for the second. I succumbed to looking and he eventually popped up behind this branch. Or was there the whole time and I just didn’t notice.
He quickly flew off. Meanwhile the first one had moved a little higher, paused a moment, then also flew off.
The Red-bellied Woodpecker didn’t give up with his Magnolia Seed Berry.
There must be a spot in this thick barked tree to lodge this berry!
Even when he found a spot he wasn’t satisfied, and this time he may have lost it for good.
The ground was covered with these Magnolia berries so he could easily try with another.
This is the third and final post in this series.
See the first post here: Red-bellied Woodpecker With Magnolia Seed Berry
See the second post here: Red-bellied Woodpecker Keeps Trying
The Red-bellied Woodpecker from Wednesday’s Magnolia Seed Berry post kept looking for a place to lodge his find in a dead tree branch above me.
He picked a pretty lichen covered perch but could not find a useful spot to put that berry.
A couple of times I thought he had lost it in a hollow place in the branch, but he eventually got it back.
After a few more unsuccessful tries he scanned for another spot.
What a find, now what do I do?
Looking almost like a cranberry, the berries that contain the Magnolia Tree seeds are pretty hard and this Red-bellied Woodpecker was trying to figure out how to get it open.
Several ideas he had for lodging it in the bark of this tree so he could peck at it did not pan out.
This dead tree is a favorite with a number of woodpeckers, including a Red-bellied Woodpecker pair that was making a nest that I photographed last month.
While I was checking in on that activity on a recent visit a Red-bellied Woodpecker was nearly camouflaged high in the tree along with what I think was a recently fledged family of Downy Woodpeckers. They were a long way up and I couldn’t get an angle for a good image but did catch this one in flight.
Over and over this Red-bellied Woodpecker peeked out the hole then ducked back in.
Finally he came out and inspected a different hole in the same tree.
Back to hole number one.
Then the chips began to fly.
The light colored feathers on this woodpecker are much darker grey than others I have seen. I saw the pair at this same tree the week before and thought their color was different, but couldn’t be sure as the light was poor. Zoom in on the image below to see his face and body feathers.
Looking for something to eat in the crevices of this dead branch this Red-bellied Woodpecker kept trying, but I didn’t see him find anything.
Upside down didn’t work so he flipped upright.
He paused for a nice profile shot.
Scouting out his next spot, he was gone in a flash.
Click on any photo for larger view.
This Red-bellied Woodpecker was not the first to check out this dead tree. The trunk is full of holes and most of the limbs are gone.
He must not have found anything interesting as he quickly moved on.