Project 366 – Post No. 260 – A day in the woods with the woodpeckers

What is Project 366? Read more here.

It was a cloudy mild winter’s day and our walk in the Whitemud Ravine started rather uneventful. If was not long, however, before we could hear the familiar drumming sound of a woodpecker going to town on a tree. That was the beginning of a nature walk with the woodpeckers. The first woodpecker was a Pileated Woodpecker in the distance. Once you spot a Pileated Woodpecker it is hard to let it go. Another couple of birders that came by shared that there were Black-backed Woodpeckers further down the trail. This woodpecker is the least common woodpeckers in these neck of the woods, so we decided to try our luck and moved on. Sure enough. One only had to listed for the familiar drumming sound and it was not long before we were able to track down the Black-backed Woodpecker (picture will be posted in a future post). This was a special treat as I have only seen this species once before in this location. From here on, things got only better. While shooting the Black-backed Woodpecker a Brown Creeper serendipitous showed up in the view finder. Further down the trail we came across a scruffy looking Downy Woodpecker only to, moments later, come across the highlight of the day, a magnificent Pileate Woodpecker looking for a snack on a stump right off trail. Wintertime is definitely woodpecker season and some days you really luck out. A peculiar nature of most woodpeckers is that they are not shy or skittish around humans and one can quite easily get close to them. I am not sure if they just could not be bothered with our presence or if they are to busy looking for food to notice us. It sure looks like they are oblivious to our presence.

Edmonton--Whitemud Park, Edmonton, Alberta, CA
Dec 15, 2019 11:47 AM - 1:52 PM
Protocol: Traveling
5.92 kilometer(s)
7 species

Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus)  1
Downy Woodpecker (Dryobates pubescens)  1
Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus)  2
Common Raven (Corvus corax)  1
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)  20
White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)  2
Brown Creeper (Certhia americana)  1 

May the curiosity be with you. This is from “The Birds are Calling” blog (www.thebirdsarecalling.com). Copyright Mario Pineda.