Birdwatching Canada

A voice for the northern birds

Flicker Wake-up Call

I was quietly enjoying my first cup of coffee this morning, watching the house finches, black-capped chickadees and white-breasted nuthatches at our feeders. Suddenly it sounded like someone had started a jack-hammer in my living room. Then it stopped. Then started again.

Not really at my brightest until I’ve consumed at least one cup of java, I was totally bewildered for a minute or two. I got up, looked out my window, twisted my head to a ridiculous angle and discovered a northern flicker on the roof overhang,  hammering on our eaves trough.

I’ve seen them using the handy, sound-reverberating tin on houses before. Hammering away on the sheet metal surrounding the chimney vent for example.

As we have a large number of trees in our yard, I can only assume they have figured out their sound carries farther when they use metal. And this behaviour is more often seen in the spring.

Clever birds – using material provided by the very creatures who have changed their landscape forever. They could wait until I’ve had my coffee, though.

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Filed under: Woodpeckers,

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