Along the Natchez Trace

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Comparing Oranges to Apples...

Golden-fronted woodpeckers have a nest in the knot-hole of the fence post about 50' from our motorhome.  We've been at this gate 4 weeks today and we've had the opportunity to watch their comings and goings.  A couple of weeks ago Bill noted that something had changed...  the eggs had hatched.
Male Golden-fronted Woodpecker

Since then we've observed the parents continually bringing food to their brood.  Both the male and female birds are constantly flying in and out...  all day long.
Easy to see how he got that name...

I've written about our Critter Buffet and included photos of some of the diners.  We have a lot of Bullock's orioles and Friday I added an orange to the "spread".  We haven't had any orioles visit yet... but yesterday the woodpeckers found the fruit and have since been constant visitors.  In fact, they completely striped both halves of the orange of its pulp.
Good to the last bite!

 Bill went into town this morning and stopped at the HEB to pick up some more oranges.  Although we have some apples in the fridge, he bought a large Fiji apple just for the birds.

I sliced it and impaled it on my shepherd hook....
The female found the apple...  wonder if her name is "Eve"?

I thought the birds really liked the orange, but since I've added the apple, they haven't even given the orange a second glance.  I don't know how long we'll be at this location but probably not long enough to see the babies fledge.  It's always a treat to watch bird parents bring their young to feed...  
Look how she's cleaning up her plate!
(This is over a time span of several hours - many, many trips back and forth from the apple to the nest)

 I took these photos from our motorhome window....  I feel like I have a ring-side seat at a very special presentation.

That's All For Today!


  1. If those babies hatched a couple of weeks ago, the babies will be fledging any day now.

  2. You are sure helping out those woodpecker parents. The great pictures are your reward. Keep up the good work.

  3. I have a question? Do you get ants on the oranges? When I put out oranges I do and then the birds shun them.

  4. And hear I thought that you could not compare apples and oranges:)

  5. I had no idea that they would eat apples! Good to know...


  6. Happy Mother's Day Sharon.

    Hope it was a great one for you.

  7. I find it interesting that they leave the peeling on the do I.

  8. Good Lord! what gorgeous pictures Sharon! you ought to submit these to whoever you submit stuff to. just awesome

  9. Belated Happy Mother's Day wishes, Sharon, and hope your day was wonderful despite being away from family. We took a short road trip over the weekend to visit my mother in NJ. Enjoyed these closeups and too bad you may not be able to see the babies. We have a robin's nest and I have been waiting for the eggs to hatch.

  10. I love your photos! I haven't seen this particular woodpecker yet, and feel like I've had a ringside seat, too. I have a shepards hook that is still in it's package. I might get some apples and oranges for the birds, too. Looks like they love them. I got a kick out of the bird taking the apple's pulp, but not the skin.