Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Christmas Treats

Yesterday I saw a flash of golden yellow feathers as a large bird flew at and then immediately away from a suet feeder. With only a brief glimpse I had an impression that this was a Northern Flicker. But it couldn't be at this time of year. Or could it? Later I saw the same bird drinking from my heated bird bath. It definitely was a Northern "Yellow-Shafted" Flicker (Colaptes auratus). I have never seen one here in the winter before.

A Northern Flicker was drinking from my heated bird bath on Christmas Day.

And the avian surprises didn't end there. At dusk an Eastern Screech Owl calmly looked out from a roost box entrance. I had been watching for the usual winter visit from this little owl for weeks and was beginning to worry that something untoward had happened. So glad to see it's stern looking wee face again.

Late on Christmas Day, an Eastern Screech owl appeared from one of my roost boxes.

These bluejays will soon be screaming their owl alarms.

While clearing snow from my driveway I noticed rabbit tracks leading into a hole in a brush pile. All summer I had wondered if this little opening was an animal den and now I know. The cotton-tail rabbit that is almost a lawn fixture has been sheltering here all along.

Fresh rabbit tracks lead directly into a hole in a brush pile.

My resident cottontail rabbit munching sunflower seeds.


  1. And the visitors arrive with joy as they see the feeders. What a delight to see the owl again.And a wee rabbit, maybe snuggled down under there keeping warm for some time. Hoping you had a wonderful Christmas, and wishes for a super New Year.

  2. How wonderful! I love the snow for the tails it tells!!!!

    P.S. I rely on batteries for the trailcams. It's been expensive. They draw a lot of energy.

  3. Hi Florence,
    the flickers that were regular visitors to our side lawn have gone now and it would be unusual to see one this late like your guy. I love your photo of Mr. Owl...the barred owl I catch a glimpse of still eludes me. I too love following the tracks this time of year and there are so many burrows to be spied. A couple big ones that I stay away from; I still think of whatever killed those robins on the deck and think of weasels.
    I'm kept busy filling the feeders during this very cold time.
    Happy, happy New Year!!

  4. Isn't this fun?!
    I like the bird bath. I may have to give up mine in winter...


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