Northern Flickers

gardener365September 23, 2010

They started arriving two or three weeks ago. This morning more had arrived doubling the group size. I can expect to see 5X the amount, yet.

Northern Flickers - short video from Mercer County IL

Dax

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dzyg

That movement looks like a flock of Starlings to me. I could be wrong but I don't know that Flickers flock together like that. Do you have a closer pic of one of the birds? Right now Starlings are changing into their Winter colors and are spotted vs solid black like they are in Summer.

Donna

    Bookmark   September 23, 2010 at 12:03PM
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birding_nut

I would say those are definitely European Starlings.

BN

    Bookmark   September 23, 2010 at 2:20PM
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gardener365

I have pictures from last year... as best as I could photograph them. Sorry 'bout that, and thanks.

Dax

Dax

    Bookmark   September 23, 2010 at 2:56PM
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Konrad___far_north

I have never seen flickers in flocks, if they are, they fly like starlings.
No coloring can be seen in your pictures, you would think that when they fly around like this that some of the bright under wings can be seen like this.

Konrad

    Bookmark   September 24, 2010 at 1:09AM
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gardener365

They're not yellow - no. I have seen prior the yellow undersides of Northern Flickers flying past my deck.

I'll still try to get another photo. Your photo is great Konrad. That's awesome. Love birds.

Dax

    Bookmark   September 24, 2010 at 6:00AM
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dzyg

I would say definately Starlings. Dang things are taking over the whole US!

Donna

    Bookmark   September 24, 2010 at 9:36AM
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beegood_gw

Starlings. Not flickers for sure. Have flocks of starlings like that out here.Do they make a kind of whirring noise when flying? I have some flickers but they just sit and dig for ants. No flying around in huge flocks.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2010 at 9:57AM
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tzmd

I had 4 flickers, 2 starlings, and a robin as a flock last month... strangest thing I had ever seen. The bugs in the lawn must have been hoppin that day! I don't have my camera with me, but I think I took a pic. I'll post if I can find it. Might be a good comparison for this thread since they would be in the same frame.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2010 at 1:01PM
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lazypup

Although I never really noticed it before, after comparing my photos I can easily see how Flickers & Starlings might be confused from a distance.

On the other hand, while starlings commonly move in flocks that number well into the hundreds, I don't recall ever seeing more than 3 flickers in one grouping.


NORTHERN FLICKER

STARLING

    Bookmark   September 28, 2010 at 8:02AM
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terrene

Northern flickers also have a white rump patch that is very visible when they are flying, particularly in the opposite direction. If those were Flickers, it would be quite the sight to see that many white spots swooping around!

    Bookmark   September 29, 2010 at 1:07PM
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gardener365

Update: I haven't seen them since the last time. Years past, they were here for weeks and if not everyday, every other day. Their absence is likely due that I was not able to mow for two weeks due to my mower being in the shop being repaired. If I keep the grass cut very low, that's when they are feasting, it seems...

Dax

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 9:45AM
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gardener365

All I had to do was talk about them and they showed up.

Again, my apologies - however all I have is a pocket camera and this was shot at a great distance.

Dax

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 10:45AM
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Konrad___far_north

Hm..now, with seeing these "darker birds"... I'm afraid these are European Starlings.

Konrad

    Bookmark   October 6, 2010 at 10:09PM
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gardener365

Here they are again. This time I was able to photograph from a relatively closer distance from my kitchen window. Last photo has three birds... the little guy on the right I think might possibly be the id I was looking for, yesterday.

Thanks a lot guys.

Dax

    Bookmark   October 7, 2010 at 9:59AM
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Konrad___far_north

Well...not flocks of birds, you could have 2 or 3 species...Starlings
Pigeon?...The little guy on the right bottom I think is a Eastern Phoebe.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2010 at 9:19PM
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gardener365

Yes sir, an Eastern Phoebe it is (id' on another thread). It's a small family of them. I've seen them chasing each other in mid-air like brothers and sisters would do. They chase and chase and then sometimes the two stop on the same shrub to rest, like as if, they are best friends.

Dax

    Bookmark   October 8, 2010 at 7:02AM
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Konrad___far_north

Oh yes, one's you have them nesting at your place it seems you have
them for live. It's my 3rd. or 4th. year nesting under the bridge over the pond....I love them dearly too,
they're sooo..much fun heaving them and stick around your yard for a long long time.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2010 at 8:38PM
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gardener365

That's good to hear. Learn, learn, and that's exactly what is happening.

Thank you sir.

Dax

    Bookmark   October 9, 2010 at 8:22AM
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Cowgirl_in_the_Sand

Same dilemma as to what these are. Took this pix last month, dark beaks and the top one looks like the legs are reddish.
I took this a month ago so don't remember how large the birds were, far away up in a tree.

Follow up: Bob Carlton Rossmoor Nature Ass'n Prez identified these as European Starlings in fall plummage.

More bird images in that gallery.

Here is a link that might be useful: Birds congregating...Starlings

This post was edited by Cowgirl_in_the_Sand on Wed, Dec 12, 12 at 13:03

    Bookmark   December 11, 2012 at 9:26PM
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bob_n_bernie_wa

This is almost a flock of Red-Shafted Flickers. Three on the feeder. Two on the fence. A 6th was on the ground not in the picture.

BobnBernie

Seattle

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 12:13AM
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compost_hugger_nancy

Oh this coming year I will have to find my camera and try for a shot of the "flock" of flickers I get!!! Lots of ants here and they spread out all over the yard!!! Not as big as a flock of starlings but none the less where there is an abundance of ants they WILL flock feed!!!

    Bookmark   December 18, 2012 at 5:01PM
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