Either I’m becoming more observant, or new birds are suddenly in my field of vision. Today, simply walking Samson, we saw a few of these:
A Wood Stork is the only stork native to North America. They slowly stalk but quickly snap up fish, frogs and whatever else they can find in swamps, ponds and today, roadside ditches.
Birdwatchersdigest.com nominates them for “ugliest bird,” but I think that’s a bit harsh. The eating must have been good today, since this one hardly looked up when I paused to take his (and his friend’s) picture.
I was sitting out back a few days ago when I heard this repetitive pop, pop, pop, pop above my head. When I looked up into the trees in the lot next to my house, I saw a few woodpeckers hard at work on a tall pine tree. I had seen a pile of bark at the base of the tree, but hadn’t yet put two and two together. This tree was dead and filled with bugs, a wonderful buffet for the woodpeckers. This tree also needed to be reported to the city, too close to my house for comfort.
This bird appears to be a female Pileated Woodpecker. Crow-sized, she has the triangulate crest on the top of her head but I don’t see the red cheek stripe of the male. These woodpeckers like large, standing dead trees, in which they can drill for carpenter ants and other insects.