In the Flicker of an Eye

posted in: Birds | 26

The Northern flickers are ground feeding woodpeckers that usually come in April through October as they pass through.  They mainly eat ants and beetles but will eat fruit and seeds.

I am always thrilled to see this bird especially just a few days after my cataract surgery in 2015 and recognized it right away, without even having my glasses on.  Just a week before the surgery I would of had to been wearing my glasses and then zoom in with the camera to make the positive identification.

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The flicker has a long curved beak to peck into the ground.  As you can tell from the photos they are usually on the ground in our garden but they do peck at the trees too.

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Just look at that black bib on his chest.

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I love all the black dots over its belly.

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They are up to 38 cm. long and have a grey cap with a v shape patch of red on its head.

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When they fly you see either red if you are in the west (red shafted flicker) or yellow if you are in the east (yellow shafted flicker) of Canada  The colour is under their wings and on their tail.  On one of our trips out west in British Columbia I got some great photos of the red shafted flicker.

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By this time of the year in February we are looking forward to the arrival of spring.  I can’t wait for spring and to see the flickers once again.  Here are the flickers under the back tree in 2017.  Do you see the flickers in your garden?

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I’m sharing with Wild Bird WednesdayI’d Rather B Birdin’ and Saturday’s Critters.

ABC Wednesday is up to F.  F for flickers.


Have a look at some more of my lens friends photos.

Alphabetical posts


26 Responses

  1. Eileen

    Hello, awesome series of Flicker photos. The closeups are great, they are wonderful yard birds. I only seen them on the ground here, they never visit my feeders. Thanks so much for linking up your posts and for your visit and comment. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

  2. Phil

    The flickers are so like our own Green Woodpeckers. Did you see my post about a flicker ior not a flicker in The Orkneys?

  3. Myrtle

    I have seen them and didn’t know what they were so looked them up in my bird book I like all the spots on them to and the vshaped spot of read below their head. I’ll be watching for them after I move. Great shots Linda!

  4. Angie

    The plumage on flickers is so distinctive – and classy! We do see them in Montana – lately, one or two have been visiting my suet since the ground is not accessible at the moment under several feet of snow!

  5. Jean

    Ours are all the red ones here, be interested to see a yellow shafted one now. Might have to check out my bird books. Great photos of them.

  6. Marie-OR

    The Flickers love my suet feeder! It is far from the ground, and doesn’t always contain seeds or fruit so I’m surprised they love it so much! 🙂 Great photos!

  7. Anni @ I'd Rather B Birdin'

    Awesome to know your vision is so much improved! And your flicker photos are extraordinary!

    For linking in at I’d Rather B Birding, all of us birders are very appreciative…thanks!

  8. Breathtaking

    Hello!:) The Flicker is a beautiful Woodpecker, and how fortunate that they appear in your garden and you can get these awesome shots. I only see the Great Spotted Woodpecker where I live.

  9. sallie

    Beautiful series. . I love flickers. Your pictures capture not only the beauty but also the bird’s behavior — it’s really a great series. Thank you.

  10. islandrambles

    Thanks so much for your comments on my blog. You have some lovely photos here on your whole blog, I love the flicker.Glad your vision is good now. I still zoom in with the camera as my camera eye is bad.

  11. Eileen

    Hello, the Flickers are beautiful birds. I love their colors and markings. Wonderful series of photos.
    Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Thanks so much for your comment and visit. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

  12. Margy

    Around here they love to drill through cabin walls and nest in the insulation inside. For the last two years a friend has had a Flicker do just that in the same spot and raise a brood. Boarding up the hole doesn’t seem to deter the bird one bit. – Margy

  13. sallie

    LOvely photos — and I know from experience that getting those good shots of flickers probably involved a lot of stooping, bending, or even laying on the ground. Thanks for doing that and sharing them! they are so pretty!!

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