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, February 1, 2015

Northern Flicker more common at feeders #GBBC

An interesting brown bird with spots on peanut bell
Holly has sent more great snapshots from her yard!

The Northern Flicker is becoming a common winter resident in mid-Michigan. Most of our flickers usually shift further south in the winter but more and more have been sighted at the feeders just in the last decade.

Flickers appear brownish overall with a big black bib on the chest and black polka dots underneath. But once the bird takes flight, bright yellow undersides of wing and tail feathers flash.

They’re considered a medium sized woodpecker but at 12-13 inches. I think they’re pretty big. Flickers like open habitats near trees, including woodlands, edges, yards, and parks. They eat fruits, berries, seeds, suet and nuts. Strangely enough they prefer to forage on the ground, however, as you can see, they can figure out feeders.
But wait until he flies to see the surprising sunshine!

For more information on the bird go to: allaboutbirds.org

Also make sure you get involved with the Great Backyard Bird Count this year to report what birds you have in your yard. You can find maps that show the results of people's checklists of birds during the second weekend of February from 1998-2012. Go to http://gbbc.birdsource.org/ for more information.

Multi-year animation map for Northern Flicker during GBBC 2000-2012

GBBC Map
*Mean group size is the average of all positive counts
for the species at a location for the given time period.