A Flickering Light.. Who’s Who in Colorado Part II

It’s the boys turn.
As my previous post told, I have been capturing many great Flicker photos with a WingScapes Bird Cam. These now are the male flickers that I have in my yard. I’ll go down the picture list and discuss what I think each one is. I’d be delighted to hear any discussion and opinions!

This first male I believe to be a “pure” strain of yellow-shafted. Very clear and distinct facial markings and although I don’t show it he has stunning yellow underwings. Notice the brown face and gray crown and neck.This fellow appears to be of the red-shafted variety. Notice the gray face and brown crown – opposite of the yellow-shafted, which I think is so cool.
Here is another shot of the same bird, showing the creamy brown on head and neck.
Now take a look at this guy. Barely any brown at all except around the eyes, but he has the red mustache – an intergrade – a mix between the red and yellow-shafted.
This bird I would say, leans toward, if not completely a red shafted.
Hmm. What’s different about this guy? Can you see his head is almost totally gray, with only a hint of brown and he has the faintest red “V” on the back of his neck. Also, look how pale his feather shafts are. Most certainly another intergrade!
Another intergrade variant. Mostly gray head and neck and chin with only a hint of brown in front of the eyes and a red mustache.
Yet another! This fella only has the barest of brown around the eyes and the rest of his head/ hood is totally gray. He is not the same bird as above!
Male intergrades seem to be everywhere! I find it interesting that the red mustache is dominant in the intergrade males. Even the ones who have red on the back of the neck have red mustache’s. This male is similar to, but not the same as the one above. He has more brown around his eyes and washed on the top of his head.
And finally, take a look at this beauty! Again, an intergrade with mixed characteristics. Red mustache, gray face and slighty brown crown from the red shafted, but a red “V” much more brilliant than the other bird who showed only a hint of a red “V”. The back of the crown and back of neck are gray also, more yellow-shafted influence. And although you can’t see it in this picture, this bird has very pale feather shafts and pale salmon underwings.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my musings on Flickers. My goal is to photograph the underwings of some of these birds. Which will be much more difficult. Most have salmon colored wing and tail linings, 1 has yellow under wings and one has yellow underwings and salmon coloring under the tail, very cool! I invite anyone to comment, even if it it to disagree or question what I’ve written. We all can learn from this.

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7 Responses to A Flickering Light.. Who’s Who in Colorado Part II

  1. Amy says:

    Great series and great use of Birdcam pics for a very educational posting!

  2. Alan says:

    Great series of photos! Love the BirdCam. I got one this past Christmas and really enjoying it.

  3. Thanks Alan and Amy. I myself have learned a lot. Going to figure out today how to position the Bird Cam under the suet to hopefully get wing shots..

  4. Con Daily says:

    Interesting post on one of my favorite birds! Looking forward to reading the rest of your blog.

  5. What a beautiful set of photos.

  6. I live in Layton Utah and have seen for the first time a flicker with a red V on the neck and have several pictures of it — the flicker is a beauty as you would say … thanks for your help in identifying this flicker

  7. Anonymous says:

    thank you so much for this information. I have lived in MD my whole life and this is the first time i have seen this beautiful bird. Great shots and now i have to go buy a suet feeder and hope he comes back and with friends.

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