[Tweeters] Yellow shafted Norther Flicker

CHARLES E. VAUGHAN cvaughan at u.washington.edu
Mon Nov 16 16:36:15 PST 2015


This one has the prominent golden underwing color, a distinctive red nape, whisker is distinctively black with just a sliver of red along one edge. He/she was on the feeder again today, I am getting really nice looks because the bird is 20' away and I am using 10x binoculars sitting comfortably on my couch. A bit nervous for the bird; I also had a sharp shinned hawk sitting on branches 15' from the feeder.

cev

On Mon, 16 Nov 2015, Paul Bannick wrote:


> Dear Charles, Connie and Tweeters,

> Intergrades are pretty common, especially during the winter when resident flickers are joined by migrants from the North.  

>

> Generally the Red-shafted Northern Flickers live West of the Great Plains and Yellow-shafted live East.  There is though a long, narrow hybrid (or perhaps more

> accurately inter-grade) zone on the western great plans that crosses the Rockies of Canada and into southern Alaska.  During the winter we get lots of those Alaska

> birds that show a mix of traits.  Much like the the Red-breasted and Red-naped sapsuckers, hybrid birds can sometimes look convincingly like a pure bird of one

> subspecies but are normally mixed.

>

> I have noticed over time that more of these hybrids tend to stay in the Pacific Northwest and breed into the pool (as Connie pointed out) but these are usually the

> ones that look quite a bit more like the Red-shafted birds.

>

> If you would like to see some examples check out:  

> http://paulbannick.photoshelter.com/search?I_DSC=intergrade&_ACT=search

> or

> http://paulbannick.photoshelter.com/image?&_bqG=0&_bqH=eJwL9Uj3KfYqSUwz9MvxrHIzCTMqMPC2yMtxNjaxMrMyNDAAYSDpGe8S7GybmVeSWpRelJiSquYZHxrsGhTv6WIbClJQ4WvomeuX7pgS5akW

> 7.gcYlucmliUnAEAZKsdKA--&GI_ID=

>

> I look forward to seeing my first winter intergrade flicker.

>

> Paul

>

> On Mon, Nov 16, 2015 at 3:10 PM, Connie Sidles <constancesidles at gmail.com> wrote:

> Dear Charles, Many years ago, a Yellow-shafted Northern Flicker set up nesting at Montlake Fill, in a hole near the golf driving range. He got his genes

> into the pool by pairing up with a local resident. Ever since then, we get flickers with yellow-shafted traits. Some descendants look purely

> yellow-shafted. More commonly, the descendants show more hybrid traits: they might have a red crescent on the nape, for example, but a red whisker

> instead of a black one. Or they might have one reddish whisker and one more blackish. It's always a delight to see these guys. When I see one that looks

> purely yellow, I wonder if it is another newcomer from the east, or just one of our local guys who may have hooked up with one of the descendant

> yellowish-shafted girls. It's fun to listen to the flickers' calls and note that some do sound different. Now that Barred Owls have so successfully

> crossed the Great Plains, I wonder if more eastern woodpeckers will also, not to mention other easterners. I live for the day when I see my first

> Northern Cardinal at the Fil - I only hope my blood pressure will withstand the shockl. - Connie, Seattle

> constancesidles at gmail.com

> www.constancypress.com

>

>

> On Nov 16, 2015, at 11:00 AM, CHARLES E. VAUGHAN <cvaughan at u.washington.edu> wrote:

>

> Yesterday I had a Yellow-shafted Northern Flicker hitting the suet on my backyard feeder.  First time I have ever seen this variant in Seattle.  Any

> other sightings?

>

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> --

> Paul L. Bannick

> Nature and Bird Photography

> www.paulbannick.com

> 206-940-7835

>

>



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