I've mentioned woodpeckers before and how we can go outside at pretty much any time and listen to their rat-a-tat-tatting. This morning, I didn't even need to leave the house to enjoy one of the species that frequents Our Little Acre.
About 25 feet from the family room window is a maple tree that turns the most gorgeous shade of yellow in the fall. It's leafless right now, but it looked attractive to a Red-Bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus). Romie noticed it first, and we both thought it was a Red-Headed Woodpecker because it had a red head! Logical, right?
Our woodpecker indeed had a read head, but not entirely, as the red-headed does. Apparently, ours also has a spot of red on its lower abdomen, but it's difficult to see. The male has a red stripe down its head and nape of the neck, whereas the female only has it on her neck.
This is one of several woodpeckers common to our part of Ohio, and it feeds on sunflower seeds, suet, and fruit. We'd just filled the feeders on New Year's Eve with sunflower seeds, so we're probably pretty popular with the woodpeckers right now.
It's a vocal bird and not easily scared away by humans. I've heard their call many times and wondered what bird it was making all that noise. Now I know!