Monday, March 11, 2013

Sapsuckers Visiting My House-A Crazy Story!

A little over a month ago, I discovered my first ever "yardbird" kinda rarity in my apartment complex in Glendale.  As I stepped outside my apartment, I heard tapping on one of the pine trees outside my balcony to look up and see a Sapsucker.  I ran inside to get my binoculars only to see that it was the rare in Arizona Yellow-bellied Sapsucker!  After I observed him, I wasn't able to find him again after hearing him calling once a few days later.  So over a month has gone by, and I happened to see him in that same pine tree again while walking up to my apartment.  My theory is he probably has many trees he drills sap holes in at the apartment complex, and this is just one of them.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker:  Notice the white nape and hint of the complete black border according to these pictures.

The above pictures aren't the best, and I failed at the chance to get a good shot as he briefly came out into the open.  He then flew into a set of pine trees a short distance away from the pines where he originally was. When I caught up to him, I caught a glimpse of another bird fly by me who gave me a "woodpecker/sapsucker impression".  I got close to my bird and started to take more pictures.

Do you notice anything wrong with this picture and the one above?

This is a Red-naped Sapsucker!  I was confused beyond belief.  What about the Yellow-bellied?  I went back to the original pine and looked for another Sapsucker.  Nothing!  I quickly remembered I thought I saw another sapsucker flyby when I was photographing the Red-naped that I thought was my Yellow-bellied.  There was another shot I took of the Sapsucker when I thought I was photographing the Yellow-bellied.  Look very closely.

I realized after I lost the bird that there were indeed two Sapsuckers in the same tree together.  The Red-naped Sapsucker is the one on the left and the Yellow-bellied is the one on the right.  Notice the difference in the throat pattern!

This Cooper's Hawk also made the apartment complex birding fun!

My apartments are also known as Inca Dove City!

Good apartment complex birding,

Tommy DeBardeleben

1 comment:

  1. Dang! That's the real deal there. Great photo-documentation, and of the Incas and Cooper's too.

    It's pretty killer to get some sweet yard birds like that. I remember when I was young, an injured Virginia Rail (not rare of course, but not commonly seen either) spent a few days in my parent's pool area recuperating. It'd forage around in the flower beds and sometimes stand on the steps.

    Yur a bird magnet dude.