Friday, June 29, 2012

Black-backed Woodpecker - Bauline Line

 From time to time, I take a drive through Bauline Line Extension, to Bauline Line to Pouch Cove Extension, Pouch Cove and Flatrock. Sometimes, the woods are filled with crossbills and siskins.  On my last trip around a week ago, I stopped every so often to search for warblers.  While I found some, they were not plentiful.
Sometimes, I wonder why I keep doing this route. Well, there are often enough surprises to lure me back over and over again.  On this drive over the last three years, I have seen an American Pipit, Dickcissel, a While-eyed Vireo, and on my latest trip I came across this Black-backed Woodpecker.  It is the unexpected surprises that entice me to take the slow drive along this path less travelled.
The Black-backed Woodpecker is common to Newfoundland, but I have only seen three - one each year of my birding life.  This one was a great surprise.  There is a pond on this road that is mostly hidden by the trees.  I have always thought I would stop to see if there were any special ducks in it. On this particular day, I did stop and walked toward the pond.  All of a sudden, I heard a loud "kik" coming from above. I stopped, looked around, looked up and to my delight - there was the BB Woodpecker.
There is no surpise quite as good as a totally unexpected surprise. I watched as it began to drill. Its head was in constant movement and I didn't want to get too close so my pictures don't do justice to this great bird. All my care didn't matter much, because this bird only stayed about two minutes and flew away. Nevertheless, I was quite satisfied that my drive along this northern route had once again paid off. 
Another interesting spot I will share is the road to the school and the Lion's Club in Pouch Cove.  I have found quite a bit of bird activity in this area, and I really expect something very special to show up along this road.

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