I never saw a Red-bellied Woodpecker in my youth.
In 1985, my grandfather wrote: This is a southern species, fairly common in the oak forests of the eastern USA, but rare in Ontario, except in the extreme southwestern portion. When one shows up elsewhere in Ontario, word soon spreads and birdwatchers flock in to gaze at the beautiful bird.
These days I see them fairly regularly and we had one this morning high in the oaks at Marie Curtis Park.
But the air’s so appetizin’; and the landscape through the haze
Of a crisp and sunny morning of the airly autumn days
Is a pictur’ that no painter has the colorin’ to mock—
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder’s in the shock. – James Whitcomb Riley (1849–1916)