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Posts Tagged ‘Melanerpes erythrocephalus’

A Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon) and a Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) seemed to be eyeing each other with intense curiosity this past Friday at Huntley Meadows Park when they both chose to occupy the same tree at the same time.

Redheads have a mysterious attraction, it seems, in the bird world as well as in the human world.

Belted Kingfisher and Red-headed Woodpecker

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I could hear the call of Red-headed woodpeckers (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) all around my head on Saturday at Huntley Meadows Park, but they remained hidden in the trees. Finally one of them stepped out of its comfort zone and went out on a limb, and I was able to capture this image.

Red-headed woodpecker

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Sometimes I have this feeling that the birds and other creatures that I photograph are playing games with me. On Monday this Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) seemed to be playing peek-a-boo with me at Huntley Meadows Park. It was hiding at the top of a broken-off tree and at irregular intervals would show its face for just a split second and then immediately pull it back.

As I look at the woodpecker’s head I can see streaks of brown, rather than the solid red of an adult, suggesting that this may be a juvenile redhead—maybe that’s why it likes to play games.

Red-headed Woodpecker

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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On a cool and blustery morning at Huntley Meadows Park, it seemed like most of the birds were in sheltered locations yesterday, protected from the biting wind. I did manage, though, to spot a Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) busily at work high in the trees and was able to get shots from a number of different angles as the woodpecker moved about.

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpecker

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Woodpeckers are amazingly energetic, but I guess they too sometimes need to take a break. On Monday I saw a Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) hard at work on a cavity at Huntley Meadows Park. Eventually the woodpecker climbed inside the cavity and, after looking around a bit, appeared to close its eyes to take a little nap.

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpecker

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I love the Red-headed Woodpeckers (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) at Huntley Meadows Park, though it is a strain on the neck trying to spot them, because they are always high in the trees. There an area along one of the paths at the park where I often hear the chatter of the Red-headed Woodpeckers, but it is rare for me to get an unobstructed view of one of them.

This past weekend, however, I managed to spot one of them poking about near the tip of a broken-off tree. It was a bit frustrating at first, because the bird kept its head pointed away for me, but eventually it turned its head and let me get a profile shot.

I lost sight of the woodpecker a few seconds and though it probably was hiding behind the tree. I was pleasantly surprised, however, when a bright red head suddenly peeked out from inside the tree cavity and I managed to capture that moment. Later, I was able to capture an image of a Red-headed Woodpecker with an acorn in its bill—at this time of the year, acorns seem to be one of the main food sources for these woodpeckers.

Red-headed  Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpecker

Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Woodpeckers are so energetic that it is rare for me to spot one that is not in constant motion. Recently, however, I was fortunate to spot a Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus) that seemed to be taking a break from its normal activities.

The woodpecker was relaxing on an exposed tree in the sunlight on a beautiful late autumn day. The red color of its head was even more spectacular than usual. Amazingly the woodpecker did not fly away immediately when I began to take some photos and actually changed its position a few times, almost like it was posing for me.

I hope that I have not oversaturated my readers with woodpecker shots, but I just love the attitude and look of these beautiful birds, especially the spectacular Red-headed Woodpecker.

Red-headed Woodpeckers

Red-headed Woodpecker

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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