In a struggle to be happy and free

Drystone Wall

Not quite Woody

Don and I took our lunch on a nature trail yesterday, looking for animals to shoot … photographically, of course. We tried to move along the trail quietly so as not to disturb and frighten-off our quarry. So there we were, standing on the trail, looking around us when this incredibly loud pecking erupted from above us. I was startled, to put it mildly. Looking up, we saw this lovely read-head. As near as I can tell from the various birdwatching sites on the Web, it’s a yellow-bellied sapsucker. Yes, that’s a real bird rather than a name made up to sound funny.

4M6C0211.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/1250, f/5.6, 400 ISO

4M6C0211.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/1250, f/5.6, 400 ISO

When it started pecking again, the forest paparazzi were out in full force as shutters clacked in continuous mode trying to capture its staccato movement. As shown here, its head is back, primed for a peck.


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Rabies and the Leafs


  1. _Don

    Nice! I have virtually the same shot. Probably at the same moment. My date stamp is a mere 40 seconds sooner. 🙂‑J2xpG4N/0/M/D700DSC2273‑M.jpg

    • Rick

      40 seconds? It probably was the same instant, because you mentioned your camera’s time was nearly a minute different than mine.

      We should get out there again sometime…

  2. Shawn

    awesome pic!!!

  3. Brent

    I’m sure there was an episode of Gilligan’s Island where he sees a Yellow Bellied Sapsucker. He would be proud of you both!!

  4. Jessica

    Wow. You can pay for your nifty new camera by selling your shots to Canadian Geographic! Seriously. They have photo contests at least annually.

    • Rick

      I’ve never been a fan of photo contests. You usually have to give them non-exclusive rights to submissions, in perpetuity. That’s just too good a deal for them to have me go along!

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