I was camping near the San Antonio Mountain in New Mexico when I noticed a Lewis’s Woodpecker flying to a dead tree several times. I kept watching and discovered that it was flying to a hole in the tree and it was feeding its young.
I at first had no idea what type of bird this was and I had to do some research on my ibird app. The cool thing that these woodpeckers were doing was that they were catching insects in the air during flight. I tried to photograph this but was unsuccessful. Something else that I noticed was that in the late evening the female started placing insects in a small hole for storage.
Tomorrow I will post photos of Kestrels that had a nest in this same tree.
Lewis’s Woodpecker engages in some rather un-woodpecker-like behavior in its gregarious feeding habits. Although it does forage for insects by boring into trees with its chisel-like bill, the bird also catches insects in the air during flight, (typical insect hawking), a habit that only a few other woodpeckers, such as the Acorn woodpecker, the Red-headed Woodpecker and the Northern flicker, engage in. Lewis’s Woodpecker also feeds on berries and nuts, and will even shell and store nuts in cracks and holes in wood to store until winter. It will also feed at flat, open bird feeders where it might act aggressively toward other birds.
Lewis’s Woodpecker nests in a cavity excavated from a dead tree branch. The nest is constructed mainly by the male. The female will lay between 5 and 9 eggs, which are plain white in coloration. Incubation is done by both sexes – the female sitting during the day and the male sitting at night – and lasts approximately 12 days, after which the young will hatch. The young leave the nest 4 to 5 weeks after hatching. (Wikipedia)
- Aperture: ƒ/7.1
- Camera: Canon EOS-1D Mark III
- Focal length: 500mm
- ISO: 320
- Shutter speed: 1/2000s