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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

A Downy Woodpecker

January 3rd, 2012 · No Comments

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This morning I drove 40 miles each way in a vain quest to see a Snowy Owl that the Colorado Birds mailing list had been reported on a snowy field in Brighton, Colorado. If I had found the owl, it would probably have been just a speck in the distance. And the photo would certainly have been dull, because dark clouds hid the sun all day.

But sitting at my desk at 3:30, I saw that the sun had finally broken through today’s heavy cloud cover. Since I knew that the sun would sink behind the foothills in just half an hour, the undeveloped South Campus of the University of Colorado that adjoins the complex where I live was my best choice for exercise in the sun today.

The last light of day was beautiful, and all that I then sought was a bird. And walking down a side trail, I found one of our smallest woodpeckers.

A male Downy Woodpecker was pecking away in a small cottonwood right next to the trail and was oblivious to me. Just before the light faded, I got off 275 shots in three minutes flat.

These are my favorite shots today:

The Downy Woodpecker Rests Between Pecks

The Downy Woodpecker Rests Between Pecks

Click on the picture above to enlarge

Then, it flew away.

The Downy Woodpecker Leaves Me

The Downy Woodpecker Leaves Me

Click on the picture above to enlarge

But, then, in less that five minutes the sun went down anyway.


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