Red-bellied Woodpecker at Cherry Hill Gate: May 2020

The wildlife is used to being fed at Cherry Hill Gate in Hamilton’s Royal Botanical Gardens.

I suspect that these signs have just been posted:

As a result, several species have developed techniques to draw attention to themselves and, hopefully, receive a few grains of seed from passersby who have not noticed or choose to disregard the signs.

Blue Jays and Cardinals do it by sheer beauty. They land with a flourish somewhere nearby and assume flattering positions.

Blue Jay
Blue Jay
Blue Jay
Northern Cardinal (male)
Northern Cardinal (male)
Northern Cardinal (male)
Northern Cardinal (female)

Downy Woodpeckers come so close that you could touch them and then stare at you:

Downy Woodpecker (male)

Nuthatches try to capture your attention by assuming interesting positions:

White-breasted Nuthatch
White-breasted Nuthatch

Chickadees fly directly towards you every few minutes and veer out of the way at the last moment:

Black-capped Chickadee
Black-capped Chickadee

Red-winged Blackbirds fly to a perch just behind you and try to deafen you with high-pitched screams.

Red-winged Blackbird (male)
Red-winged Blackbird (male)
Red-winged Blackbird (male)
Red-winged Blackbird (male)

In the Toronto area, squirrels will sometimes beg for food:

Eastern Gray Squirrel

Chipmunks, on the other hand, race away as soon as they see you. Not here however.

Eastern Chipmunk

They have a system of walking directly in front of you so that you almost fall over trying to avoid stepping on them. It certainly assures that you will notice them.

Eastern Chipmunk
Eastern Chipmunk

Scenes from the nature trail:

Painted Turtles

Birds that I was able to photograph:

Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (male)
Hairy Woodpecker (male)
Palm Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Carolina Wren
Carolina Wren
Carolina Wren
House Wren
House Wren
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (female)
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (male)
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (male)
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (female)
Great Blue Heron
Turkey Vulture
Murder of Crows
Baltimore Oriole (male)
Brown-headed Cowbird (male)
Brown-headed Cowbirds (male)
Blue-headed Vireo
Blue-headed Vireo
Blue-headed Vireo
Song Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swainson’s Thrush
Swainson’s Thrush
Swainson’s Thrush
Swainson’s Thrush
Swainson’s Thrush
House Sparrow (female)
Caspian tern
Double-crested Cormorant
Double-crested Cormorant
Common Grackle
Trumpeter Swan
Mallard (male)
American Goldfinch (male)
American Goldfinch (male)
Canada Goose
Gray Catbird
Gray Catbird
Barn Swallow
Barn Swallow

NATURE POETRY

May brings flocks of pretty lambs,
Skipping by their fleecy dams.            – Sara Coleridge (1802–52)

Miles Hearn

4 thoughts on “Red-bellied Woodpecker at Cherry Hill Gate: May 2020

  1. MICHAEL MELADY

    Just Superb photos, Miles. What a way to start each day by viewing them! Very uplifting and inspiring!
    Thanks for providing these on a daily basis.
    Some of these photos should be turned into posters.

    Reply
  2. Lisa Volkov

    I second that motion about turning photos into posters!
    Poor things! Are the painted turtles showing off too? I am making the safe (in this season) assumption that the birds have natural sources of food and are not completely dependent on what people give them (even if they would like to get it!) Gorgeous pictures, Miles. Thanks!

    Reply
  3. Elise Rose

    I was in Hamilton at the Royal Botanical Gardens last summer. Those signs were up last year (about not feeding the animals/ birds) but all the locals seemed to be in the habit of ignoring those signs. I observed the same bird and in particular, chipmunk behaviour as described above.

    I so enjoy these daily reports. Miles, you are doing all of us a great service. Thank you and please keep it up.

    Reply
  4. Pina

    Wonderful pictures of a lot of birds and the other animals. . And some interesting information too.
    So a bunch of crows is called a murder of crows. I didn’t know that. I will beware of them the next time I see them.

    Reply

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