About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Brown and tan bird on tree trunk

It’s such a treat when I spot the Brown Creeper circling the locust tree right outside my window. They're not a frequent visitor like the nuthatches but it’s always a welcome site to see a creeper not so much creeping up a tree but dancing up the trunk of a tree, checking all the crevices in the bark for hidden bugs or larvae. 

Brown Creeper Certhia americana 
Order: PASSERIFORMES Family: Creeper (Certhiidae)

Description: The creeper has a long stiff, pointed tail to help it climb tree trunks, and a long down curved bill to probe insects from bark. Its brown back feathers with buff white streaks, white eyebrow feathers, and white belly feathers make them nearly indistinguishable from a piece of bark.

General: The cryptic Brown Creeper usually hangs out in old-growth forests and will nest behind loose bark of a dying tree. The base of the nest is attached to the bark with webbing from cocoons or spider egg cases, and then a cup is made of fine pieces of bark, fibers, leaves, mosses, and feathers.

Behavior: Brown Creepers are the only tree creepers in North America. Feeding mainly on invertebrates found on tree trunks, they start at the bottom of a tree, spiral upward, then float down to the base of the next tree and begin again. A group of creepers are collectively known as a "sleeze" and a "spiral" of creepers.
 
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