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© Ron LeValley Photography 2014

Hairy Woodpecker

This is a request for information! Last year I sent out a picture of a Hairy Woodpecker with yellow outer tail feathers. I had never seen one before and there is no mention in the literature of this happening. Of course I passed it off as an aberrant individual. But what to my surprise when this bird showed up at our feeder showing the same characteristics! I mentioned this to a number of birding friends (including the author of the National Geographic field guide and the author of a book on Woodpeckers and Owls) at the Central valley Birding Symposium last month, and none had ever seen or heard of one of these either except John Sterling mentioned that he had seen one of these just north of us last year. As I mentioned this to others, Becky Bowen sent me a photo of a Hairy Woodpecker from last July just north of Fort Bragg with the same tail color! What's going on? If you have ever seen a Hairy Woodpecker with yellow outer tail feathers I would like to hear about it. I am beginning to believe that we have a small population with this characteristic locally -- but how locally I don't know!

Image Details

LocationThis photograph was taken on November 1, 2010 on the Little River Headlands, Mendocino County, California
Date Taken2010:11:02 13:26:04
Camera MakeCanon
Camera ModelCanon EOS 7D
ISO Speed250
Focal length420/1

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