Nov 30 2012

Unidentified Flying Dinosaur: Fraidy-Dinos

Ibis3 sent me a photo that will hopefully make you work for it. Ya’ll have had it easy lately. I feel like I’m not giving you proper challenges. Perhaps a semi-sasquatch photo where the bird’s all blurry will help make things challenging. Besides, it’s a rather nice bird.



Here’s it’s story:

The picture was taken on October 3rd, about a kilometre and a half from the north shore of Lake Ontario, approximately 80 km east of Toronto. There were about four or five of them in my back yard but as soon as I got my camera and went outside to take a snap, they decided it was too scary and departed forthwith. If you have any other questions, I’d be happy to answer.

So we have one slightly braver bird in a cluster of ‘fraidy-birds, who held still enough for a snap but not still enough for a glamor shot. I have every faith in you, my darlings. Go forth and identify!


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  1. 1

    Flicker, I think, probably of the yellow-shafted variety since it’s east of the Mississippi.

  2. 2
    Michael Smith-Sardior

    Gilded Flicker… photographed them in Flagstaff. ;-)

  3. 3
    greg haworth

    Definitely, Northern Flicker.

  4. 4

    Ditto, and by virtue of the black mustache is a male. Western birds, (red shafted) males have red mustache.

    1. 4.1

      Gilded Flickers (Dana will know about these from her Arizona days) have red malars too, abear; so, yes, a male of the Yellow-shafted persuasion.

  5. 5

    They shed the coolest feathers, too, with a brilliant yellow shaft (as Treb implies).

  6. 6

    Late to the party, I will also say eastern/yellow-shafted flicker. Apparently not tricky enough, Dana!

  7. 7

    Late again, but I concur – flicker of the yellow-shaft variety.
    You can’t fool us with these blurry photos, Dana. We’re better than that.

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