Island Count- Flock of Flickers

This week has been fairly slow. Rain and snow, and today a North wind combined to shut off the raptors. However, I did get a show of Northern Flickers today. As I watched the sky and trees below me for movement, every once in a while I’d spot something. Most often it was an American Crow, and once or twice a Common Raven. They like to hang out and harass each other. However, a good portion of today’s migrants today were Norther Flickers, and many of them passed right over the top of Fort Holmes.

They have a unique, bouncy kind of flight. Their wings look almost like they are elastic, pulling them out of their last bounce on a trampoline. Quite a few of them landed for short stops at the top of the bluff, allowing me to get a really good look at their beautiful markings. At one point, I could count a dozen of them in the trees just to the North of Fort Holmes. Then a loud crow passing caused all of them to take off at once. In all there were 26 Northern Flickers! After take off, they all headed back to the South, and I continued to get individuals or pairs of them migrating through.

I hope the next few days bring a little sunshine and more raptors. Song birds, Corvids, and woodpeckers are nice on a slow day, but I’m here for the hawks!

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