This Is For The Birds

This Is For The Birds

Sunday, September 16, 2012

FAVORITE PHOTOS: 120719 (0748-0755)

Following my perceived botched Great Blue Heron encounter, I resolved to see if I could find a preoccupied bird that didn't see my human presence or a trusting bird didn’t see my human presence as threatening.

Almost immediately, I heard a familiar sound, and pursued it. It wasn’t long before I came upon and saw the source… …or sources: Pileated Woodpeckers. There were three of them when I first spied them, but one of them immediately took off, left in a noisy exit.

Subsequently, I began to shoot, click away at the two of them who stayed before me. I instantly recognized one of them as a male, and began focusing on the red mustache. Whenever the opportunity presented itself, I tried to get both of them by focusing on some point between them. After a minute of two, I realized their pattern of traversing up and down the tree. They would walk, climb, scale up the tree several feet while pecking at it, and then descend back down to the ground, only to start back up it again. They did this repeatedly.

One did it gracefully..,

…and the other flopped, dropped, stumbled, and flailed.

It would be a lie to even imply that I knew what was going on as I viewed the eight-minutes-long spectacle. All I was concentrating on was getting closer, getting them when they weren’t driving their heads toward the tree, getting clearer shots, getting both of them together, getting their eyes. In fact, for all I knew at the time, I was shooting two birds looking for or feasting upon something good to eat in that tree.

A father and son.

Here they are:

I thought I had been spotted by the one that left the other two, but, in hindsight, what I think I saw was a mother telling her mate to teach his son how to find food while she goes to eat breakfast in peace for the first time in two months.

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