Look at the Birdie (Open Thread)

I saw this big guy in my laurel oak yesterday, pecking away at a dead branch:

Thank Flying Spaghetti Monster for lovely birds to keep despair at bay. Otherwise, the antics of Sunkist Stalin might compel me to pour a quart of bourbon into a half-eaten container of Häagen-Dazs Dulce De Leche ice cream and call it dinner.

Open thread!

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110 replies
  1. 1
    Sandia Blanca says:

    Betty, I love your collection of nicknames for the PEEOTUS. And the bird is lovely (although my husband always reminds me that, if you have a woodpecker, that means you have a damaged tree).

    ReplyReply
  2. 2
    BGinCHI says:

    Hey, Mr. Tangerine man, sing a jailbird song for me.

    ReplyReply
  3. 3
    Corner Stone says:

    Chuck Todd just busted his last nut trying to nail the editor of Buzzfeed on why they published “unverified” reports.
    I wish that dude would have said, “like you and all NBC network carried nightly updates of stolen, unverified emails as if they were real-deal news items you could authenticate?”

    ReplyReply
  4. 4
    p.a. says:

    Had chicken Tom Yam soup for dinner and a splish of it somehow got past my specs and int my lefy eye. YeeeeeeeeWaaaaahhhhhh. Like I mixed Tobasco with lighter fluid, poured it in and lit it….

    ReplyReply
  5. 5
    Corner Stone says:

    Journalism? Fuck you Chuck Todd!

    ReplyReply
  6. 6
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Sandia Blanca: Yeah, we’re hoping to sell the house before that tree goes tits up.

    ReplyReply
  7. 7
    NotMax says:

    Are you sure the bird wasn’t a Russian plant sending out spying data by pecking in code?

    ReplyReply
  8. 8
    khead says:

    “If Khrushchev likes Ike, I consider that an asset – not a liability.”

    Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1953

    ReplyReply
  9. 9
    Stacy says:

    Donny Two Chins, mob name. Lady Marmalade for Melania.

    ReplyReply
  10. 10
    Corner Stone says:

    I think Chuckles is pissed Buzzfeed scooped everyone else on a story they “all” agreed would not be run.

    ReplyReply
  11. 11
    Corner Stone says:

    @khead: It barely even bothers me he said it, but moreso that he used third person.

    ReplyReply
  12. 12
  13. 13
    Schlemazel says:

    Pileated woodpecker?! I didn’t know they hung out that far South. I have seen them up here on the tundra but they are pretty shy so that is very cool you saw one at all.

    If you hear them you can see why Walt Lantz thought Woodie was laughing at him

    ReplyReply
  14. 14
    Roger Moore says:

    @Sandia Blanca:

    if you have a woodpecker, that means you have a damaged tree

    Not all woodpeckers! Here in Southern California, we have acorn woodpeckers, which collect and store acorns as their primary source of food. They will drill holes to store the acorns in damaged trees, but they appear to prefer healthy palm trees, telephone poles, and other human-built wooden structures.

    ReplyReply
  15. 15
    JPL says:

    @Corner Stone: Chuck lies awake at night waiting for the 3:00 am tweet. Instead of counting sheep, he repeats I’ve been good President-elect Trump.

    ReplyReply
  16. 16
    MelissaM says:

    pour a quart of bourbon into a half-eaten container of Häagen-Dazs Dulce De Leche ice cream and call it dinner.

    Well why the hell not?? Sounds wunnerful to me.

    ReplyReply
  17. 17
    bystander says:

    I gave up caring what a pileated woodpecker was doing to our sycamore. They’re so beautiful, it’s a privilege to see one.

    I’m loving all the pearl clutching over Yellowatergate. Remember, “I’m now going to read what wikileaks (Putin) has put out, and I’m going to note that we have not verified the authenticity of the leaks right before I discuss them as if they were authenticated.”?

    ReplyReply
  18. 18
    NotMax says:

    @SiubhanDuinne

    Summer camp used to work at showed a movie one night a week. The company we rented them from also provided a free “rainy day reel” which consisted of a critical mass of (probably public domain) cartoons yanked from beneath the bottom of the barrel, including a couple on non-Woody Lantz stinkeroos. All in grainy black-and-white versions, too.

    ReplyReply
  19. 19
    debbie says:

    Trump called out Lindsay Graham and made fun of him, but I thought he’d lay into John McCain since he was the one who sent the dossier to the FBI. This is also confusing me.

    ReplyReply
  20. 20
    Mike in NC says:

    Chuck Todd’s balls will soon be sitting in Steve Bannon’s safe, if they aren’t already there.

    ReplyReply
  21. 21
    Ryan says:

    Thanks for the tip. If only I could integrate the bourbon into lunchtime sammiches. Maybe a marinade of some sort. Plus a thermos of “soup.”

    ReplyReply
  22. 22
    Yoda Dog Democrat says:

    Ive been playing No Man’s Sky on PS4 to decompress. Should be No Person’s Sky or something but I digress. It is a beautiful game where you’re simply left stranded with a broken spaceship and spacesuit and left to survive and explore an entire universe on your own. You are alone. There is next-to-no violence, mostly you just collect different materials like Plutonium or Iron and use “plans” to construct things to help you survive and explore further.

    Anyways, I’m not sure if anyone else plays video games besides Cole but I highly recommend it as very therapuetic in a world gone totally mad. Birdwatching works too. Cheers.

    ReplyReply
  23. 23
    patroclus says:

    The Cubbies are going to the WH while Obama is still President! Smart move!!

    ReplyReply
  24. 24
    Cermet says:

    Donny Dump lied his way through a news conference and once more, we learned the man is stupid, a pathological liar, and an egotistic madman that is both dangerous and greedy. In other news, we are still alive.

    ReplyReply
  25. 25
    Baud says:

    I went to the Democratic Party’s official website. Like all websites nowadays, it had links for connecting to the Dems through social media. The first three were Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Fine. Two others were Vine and Instagram. I’ve never used them but I’ve heard of them. Another was SnapChat. Huh???? The final one was Medium, which I’ve never heard of, but if you click on it, it goes to a website that bills itself as “To The Left: The official web publication of the Democratic Party.”

    I have to admit, all of this social media stuff leaves me dazed and confused. I get the impression that very little of it outside of Facebook and Twitter are actually useful.

    ReplyReply
  26. 26
    Baud says:

    @patroclus: Agree. Although I wonder if there’s more to it than the fact that Obama is a Chicago guy.

    ReplyReply
  27. 27
    JordanRules says:

    I’m annoyed the media is calling that shit show a press conference.

    ReplyReply
  28. 28
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    Lovely bird. A dead tree was taken down over one winter, and Woody (as I called the pileated woodpecker who liked that tree), was obviously put out at the discovery in the spring. I did not know before then that woodpeckers would stomp around looking annoyed.

    ReplyReply
  29. 29
    Baud says:

    Raven will be disappointed. Apparently, Trump’s pick for the head of the VA is a solid guy and not a hack.

    ReplyReply
  30. 30
    debbie says:

    So Trump laid into Lindsay Graham during his press conference. Why didn’t he touch John McCain, who sent the dossier to the FBI?

    ReplyReply
  31. 31
    🌷 Martin says:

    @Yoda Dog Democrat: I would also recommend Stardew Valley for this. Be a farmer, do some fishing, be nice to the neighbors.

    ReplyReply
  32. 32
    Thor Heyerdahl says:

    Someone needs to do an update on the Honecker and Brezhnev kiss that was painted on the Berlin Wall – replacing with Vlad and Donny Littlefingers.

    My God, Help Me to Survive This Deadly Love

    ReplyReply
  33. 33
    debbie says:

    @Baud:

    He’s also in the Obama administration. That’s the real shock.

    ReplyReply
  34. 34
    NotMax says:

    @Yoda Dog Democrat

    A game was looking forward to for a long, long time after it was first announced. Scuttlebutt was that the initial release version was chock-a-block with problems, so have held off thus far. Haven’t kept up with any patches which may have improved game play since then.

    BTW, in a similar vein, you might keep an eye out for Astroneer.

    ReplyReply
  35. 35
    laura says:

    Betty Cracker, I’m going to be in Fort Lauderdale for work next week and hope to do some bird watching during free time. I’ve been enjoying your photos over the last few weeks and am eager to see/sketch come what may.
    If you’ve any suggestions for increasing the chances of seeing some cool creatures, please let me know what to be on the lookout for.

    We’ve had a Northern Flicker in our yard in Sacramento the last year. It’s a ground feeding pecker, and the first time I saw him it freaked me out! We put up a box and hope it returns and settles in for the long haul.

    ReplyReply
  36. 36
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Baud: I thought I remembered reading this past Fall that professional athletes were overwhelmingly pro-Trump. Though I suppose “compared to Hillary Clinton” might yield different numbers than “compared to Barack Obama.”

    ReplyReply
  37. 37
    Olivia says:

    Beautiful bird. The first time I saw a pileated woodpecker, I was shocked at how large they are. The Woody cartoons didn’t prepare me for reality, I guess. Betty, your photos have been excellent. Thanks for posting them.

    ReplyReply
  38. 38
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Baud: Baud!! Don’t admit your liabilities on a public forum! It will hurt your chances in 2020. Shhhh.

    ReplyReply
  39. 39
    Baud says:

    @FlipYrWhig: True. I also assumed that there was a racial divide in the political leanings in pro athletes (even more than in the U.S. generally).

    ReplyReply
  40. 40
    lamh36 says:

    Whoa…music lovers…how’s this for a tough question:

    ‏@tvonetv 13s13 seconds ago
    Who was the better lead vocalist of The Temptations? The smooth Eddie Kendricks or the seductive David Ruffin?

    ReplyReply
  41. 41
    zhena gogolia says:

    @bystander:

    GOD I HATE THEM! I wrote to Dean Bacquet today to ask why he’s betraying his country. We’ll see if I get an answer.

    ReplyReply
  42. 42
    SFAW says:

    @bystander:

    I gave up caring what a pileated woodpecker was doing to our sycamore. They’re so beautiful, it’s a privilege to see one.

    And they’re really good eatin’ if you grill ’em with a little honey.

    ReplyReply
  43. 43
    Baud says:

    @Patricia Kayden: Why do Dems other than Anthony Weiner need to communicate through SnapChat?

    I think voters will share my fear and distrust of social media by the time 2020 rolls around.

    ReplyReply
  44. 44
    BJ Lurker says:

    Chuck Todd, the kind of both sides do it and a role model for lazy journalism doesn’t trust us to make our own assessments of what we hear and read.

    I have got to learn how to change the channel.

    ReplyReply
  45. 45
    zhena gogolia says:

    @lamh36:

    Kendricks. Just My Imagination. nuff said

    ReplyReply
  46. 46
    Yoda Dog Democrat says:

    @🌷 Martin: Noted! Thank you!

    ReplyReply
  47. 47
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @JordanRules: It was …. something but definitely not a press conference — at least not in the conventional sense.

    The media will continue to bend over backwards to normalize Trump no matter how outrageously he behaves. I’m waiting for him to come down from the podium and actually body slam one of the “crooked” reporters to the ground. Other reporters will probably cheer him on and then write stories about how the body slammed reporter was asking for it.

    ReplyReply
  48. 48
    Mike E says:

    @Baud: blind pig=> acorn

    ReplyReply
  49. 49
    Baud says:

    @Mike E: It would be statistically amazing for all of Trump’s appointees to suck.

    ReplyReply
  50. 50
    Mike E says:

    @patroclus: Cubs don’t want no orange taint

    ReplyReply
  51. 51
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @BJ Lurker: You will feel better when you stop watching cable news. Watching them fawn all over Trump for the next four years is bad for your blood pressure and sanity. And now we have MSNBC morphing into Fox News lite.

    ReplyReply
  52. 52
    Mike E says:

    @Baud: Not so much deckchairs but, curtains

    ReplyReply
  53. 53
    NotMax says:

    @Baud

    Social media is neither.

    ReplyReply
  54. 54
    BJ Lurker says:

    Patricia, you are so right. Greta Van Susteren anyone?

    ReplyReply
  55. 55
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Baud: I assume Dems are trying to be cool and appear to be down with the latest technologies to reach out to the younger voters. All the young’uns use snapchat and tumblr nowadays.

    ReplyReply
  56. 56
    hilts says:

    @patroclus:

    One more reason to love the Cubs. Good for them to snub Jabba Trumpenstein.

    @Corner Stone:

    Chuck Todd is paralyzed from the neck up.

    ReplyReply
  57. 57
    Yoda Dog Democrat says:

    @Baud:

    I think voters will share my fear and distrust of social media by the time 2020 rolls around.

    Im already right there with you. I consider even fb and tweeter to be useless. But Im over 25 so what the hell do I know, amiright?

    ReplyReply
  58. 58
    Baud says:

    @Patricia Kayden: Oddly, Tumblr isn’t one of the options.

    I haven’t paid that much attention to the DNC chair race because they all seem fine to me, but I might well support whoever has a plan for bringing coherence to Dem Internet messaging (including their emails). Admittedly, it’s not the most important thing, but it would be nice.

    ReplyReply
  59. 59
    A Ghost to Most says:

    @laura:
    We have several resident flickers. They are the mouthpiece of Satan when they are banging on our fireplace flue.

    ReplyReply
  60. 60
    ChrisB says:

    @BJ Lurker: Me too because after Chuck Todd comes Greta Van Susteren. I figured I’d give her show a chance. The first time I tuned in, there was Reince Priebus. Next time, it was Jason Chaffetz. Today, Kellyanne Conway. Forget it!

    ReplyReply
  61. 61
    Mike in NC says:

    If Trump decides to give cute nicknames to the members of the White House Press Corpse, they’ll be more than happy to only toss him softball questions.

    ReplyReply
  62. 62
    SFAW says:

    @lamh36:

    Who was the better lead vocalist of The Temptations? The smooth Eddie Kendricks or the seductive David Ruffin?

    Yes.

    Depends on what you like, I guess. I’m more of a Ruffin guy, because the types of songs where he excelled (my opinion, of course), such as “Can’t Get Next to You,” are more my preference. (Yes, I know Kendricks had some key parts in it.)

    I appreciate them more now than I did as a kid; wish I had smartened up at an earlier age.

    ReplyReply
  63. 63
    Mike E says:

    @lamh36: Ball of Confusion…I pick Eddie

    ReplyReply
  64. 64
    p.a. says:

    @hilts: mentapalegic

    ReplyReply
  65. 65
  66. 66
    Mj_Oregon says:

    You’re having fun with that new camera, Ms Cracker! And I’m loving the bird photos. They’re such lovely interludes between bouts of anger and despair brought on by the antics of the press and/or the PEE-OTUS.

    ReplyReply
  67. 67
    Baud says:

    @lamh36: Heh. “No. 1”

    ReplyReply
  68. 68
    p.a. says:

    @A Ghost to Most: Stay alert if flickers like your property: they lurve carpenter ants and carpenter ants lurve your house’s wood.

    ReplyReply
  69. 69
    SFAW says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    I’m waiting for him to come down from the podium and actually body slam one of the “crooked” reporters to the ground.

    The only one he’d stand a chance doing that to would have been Helen Thomas, because of her age (were she still alive). The rest of them would kick his obese ass down the hall. Maybe he’d think he was tough, because he grew up in Queens.

    Of course, Chuckles would make things easier, by whipping out his kneepads, dropping to the floor, and opening wide. (I think Villago’s bad attitude is rubbing off on me.)

    ReplyReply
  70. 70
    MomSense says:

    @Corner Stone:

    I tweeted that to him. I’m old enough to remember when his excuse for not correcting falsehoods about Obamacare was that it wasn’t the media’s job to sell it. He was so smug in that intwrview. I really wanted to deck him.

    ReplyReply
  71. 71
    Mike in NC says:

    @ChrisB: Remember that Greta was BFF for a while with Sarah Palin, who I still think will end up with some job in the Trump administration for which she is eminently unqualified.

    ReplyReply
  72. 72
    evodevo says:

    @a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): They nest exclusively in old dead BIG trees, so I imagine it was counting on scooping out a nice nest hole, and …..

    ReplyReply
  73. 73
    MomSense says:

    @Baud:

    Hopefully if you sign up a real human will contact you.

    ReplyReply
  74. 74
    Baud says:

    @MomSense: Why? I hate humans.

    ReplyReply
  75. 75
    Another Scott says:

    @Baud: What’s that old saying? “If you’re not paying, you’re the product”?

    Why Facebook isn’t free (2:05)

    ;-)

    Cheers,
    Scott.

    ReplyReply
  76. 76
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Just stop, those unverified e-mails were about democrats, and not just any democrat, Hillary Rodham Clinton. There is nothing wrong with reporting accusations against the democrats with out verification, after all some people are saying is reason enough to report to the people and let them decide. When reporting on the GOP and now especially Tangman, you must have three sources with documented evidence and the story must have 110 % certainty, it is irresponsible to speculate. If any one issues a denial, then the story is bogus unless proven beyond a reasonable doubt, allegations on the other hand against democrats are valid unless innocence is proven beyond reasonable doubt.

    ReplyReply
  77. 77
    John M. Burt says:

    Thank Flying Spaghetti Monster for lovely birds to keep despair at bay.

    I have a recurring fantasy of writing a script for a Superman movie.
    I don’t know what goes on in the middle, but it opens with two guys walking down a street. Joe is complaining that in the modern world there aren’t any miracles, there’s no wonder, there’s nothing to make you stop and say–
    Meanwhile, Jerry comes to a halt and his hand slowly rises to point upward. He interrupts Joe’s rant by saying very softly, “Look. Up in the sky….”
    The film closes with Joe and Jerry walking in Metropolis’ Centennial Park. This time it’s Joe who calls out and points upward, and the camera cuts to a rare and beautiful bird (perhaps one which was released from the Metropolis Zoo during a fight scene). Jerry expresses surprise that Joe had even noticed it, and Joe says, “Well…I look up more often these days.”
    So yeah, good on you to notice that woodpecker.

    ReplyReply
  78. 78
    Sandia Blanca says:

    @Roger Moore: Interesting! Don’t think that’s the kind we have in Texas.

    ReplyReply
  79. 79
    BJ Lurker says:

    Well, I guess MSNBC couldn’t find anyone more qualified than Greta for that time slot. You know, someone of the calibre of, oh I don’t know, Joy Reed?

    ReplyReply
  80. 80
    Miss Bianca says:

    @lamh36: Oh, God…that’s like trying to pick your favorite Beatle! (I think I’m gonna go with David Ruffin, tho’. Purely personal preference).

    ReplyReply
  81. 81
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Nah he’s just an idiot who accepts everything republicans say as gospel. Remember the clouds and shadows, and scandal that was injected into every report about Clinton, the constant talk about how she needed to clear the air. Tangman is in a cesspool surrounded by dams of shit, and Chuck is acting like anyone being critical is a sore loser looking to rain on his parade.

    ReplyReply
  82. 82
    Ian says:

    @Baud:
    You better get on snapchat if you want to win in 2020. You look as silly as Trump on Twitter. GET WITH THE PROGRAM! WE NEED YOU!

    ReplyReply
  83. 83
    waysel says:

    @debbie: Given that Comey put Trump in the Whitehouse, how is McCain giving him the dossier an anti Trump move? Seems more like showing Comey everyone else cards. I am mystified.

    ReplyReply
  84. 84
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    John Lennon, no sweat.

    ReplyReply
  85. 85
    Turgidson says:

    @MomSense:

    Yes, Chucklehead Todd thinks baldfaced, easily-refuted lies are A-OK as long as they can be characterized as “messaging successfully.” Fact-checking these “messaging successfullies” for his audience would have amounted to being a PR flack for Obama.

    Chucklehead Todd is very high in the running for “most useless member of the media, worldwide.” But I think he’s still behind Ron “Why Won’t He LEEEAAAD” Fournier and Matthew “No, Really, I’m A Totally Objective Independent Now!! Why Are You Laughing?” Dowd, to say nothing of David f’ing Brooks.

    ReplyReply
  86. 86
    NotMax says:

    @zhena gogolia

    Pete Best.

    ;)

    ReplyReply
  87. 87
    FarmerG says:

    I’ve known I had a couple of pairs of pileated woodpeckers around the house for years but only last week saw one land on a tree behind the house and disappear into a camouflaged nest hole.

    Saw him/her today but my dog was around so he/she danced around and gave me a nice show before flying off rather than give away the nest. The tree is 30′ from the back of my house :-).

    ReplyReply
  88. 88
    Calouste says:

    @NotMax: It was all downhill for the Beatles after Stu Sutcliffe left.

    ReplyReply
  89. 89
    joel hanes says:

    @Yoda Dog Democrat:

    I’m not sure if anyone else plays video games

    Only Fallout 4 (in which I am saving the world) is allowing me to retain some semblance of sanity in these parlous times (in which I am almost powerless to save America from its self-imposed self-damage)

    ReplyReply
  90. 90
    Roger Moore says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    I thought I remembered reading this past Fall that professional athletes were overwhelmingly pro-Trump.

    White professional athletes were overwhelmingly pro-Trump. Black professional athletes were strongly pro-Hillary. I don’t know for sure, but I’d guess that immigrant athletes are probably strongly anti-Trump.

    ReplyReply
  91. 91
    Comrade Scrutinizer says:

    @NotMax: Stuart Sutcliffe.

    ReplyReply
  92. 92
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Roger Moore: Stands to reason…

    ReplyReply
  93. 93
    joel hanes says:

    @Olivia:

    The first time I saw a pileated woodpecker, I was shocked at how large they are.

    The Ivory-billed was even larger.
    There’s a vanishingly small chance that one or two still exist.

    Don’t it always seem to go …

    ReplyReply
  94. 94
    Turgidson says:

    @hovercraft:

    allegations on the other hand against democrats are valid unless innocence is proven beyond reasonable doubt.

    Let’s be honest. Even this level of proof is not enough to close the book on alleged misconduct or scandal by a Democrat.

    ReplyReply
  95. 95
    HeidiMom says:

    A few weeks ago, while walking Heidi, I heard a slow drumbeat and turned around to see what it was. Lo and behold, it was a pileated. I’d always thought of them as birds of the deep woods, but this one was in a suburban neighborhood bordering on cornfields and scrubby woods. No further sightings, but I live in hope.

    ReplyReply
  96. 96
    jerri says:

    @Cermet: All Trump needed to complete his appearance was a large flower in his lapel that squirted water.

    ReplyReply
  97. 97

    @Baud: What about the jackals and hyenas of Balloon Juice? Surely, you don’t hate them?

    ReplyReply
  98. 98
    Roger Moore says:

    @jerri:

    All Trump needed to complete his appearance was a large flower in his lapel that squirted water.

    Are you sure it would have been water?

    ReplyReply
  99. 99
    donnah says:

    Yesterday something caught my eye, movement in the grass in my neighbor’s side yard. It was big, but I could barely see it against the dead leaves on the grass. Turns out it was a small hawk, ripping a bloody something to bits with its beak.

    His camo was perfect, so good that even though I snagged a quick pic on my iPad, I can barely make him out. And we’re in the suburbs, close to busy streets and the highway. I felt like I could have been in a cabin in the woods.

    Love the birds!

    ReplyReply
  100. 100
    jharp says:

    Coolest bird around in my opinion.

    I get them in my wooded backyard in the suburbs of central Indiana.

    ReplyReply
  101. 101
    Steeplejack (tablet) says:

    @lamh36:

    Went to see who sang lead on “Ask the Lonely,” but, oops, it was the Four Tops. Great song nonetheless.

    To tell the truth, a lot of the Temps/​Tops stuff runs together for me. But in a good way.

    ETA: Think I lean David Ruffin.

    ReplyReply
  102. 102
    TriassicSands says:

    Pileated woodpeckers are impressive birds. Too bad it’s not an ivory-billed woodpecker — another victim of humanity’s loving stewardship of the planet. Thank goodness Trump has nominated Scott Pruitt to head the EPA, because, apart from Trump himself, no one cares more about the environment than Pruitt.

    ReplyReply
  103. 103
    stinger says:

    @John M. Burt: Oh, that’s nice!

    ReplyReply
  104. 104
    Rob says:

    I love Pileated Woodpeckers.
    eta: Lovely photo!

    ReplyReply
  105. 105
    TriassicSands says:

    @jharp:

    Coolest bird around in my opinion.

    I can’t tell you your opinion is wrong — opinions are personal and you’ve certainly chosen a worthy candidate for the coolest bird around.

    My comment would be there’s no such thing. There are just too many amazing birds, spread all across the world. So many that virtually every area in the world has a candidate (or 10 or 20) for the “coolest.” And the variety of cool birds is so great that I can imagine a person’s mind changing constantly based on nothing more than mood.

    But, yes, you are right, the pileated woodpecker is truly a great critter.

    Thanks, Betty, for the photo. I live in an area with pileated woodpeckers, but I see many, many more bald eagles than I do pileated woodpeckers. I’ve heard many more pileated woodpeckers than I have seen. In my opinion, pileated woodpeckers are definitely cooler than bald eagles. But many people would not agree.

    ReplyReply
  106. 106
    The Lodger says:

    @John M. Burt: The names Joe and Jerry are a nice touch. It took them a long time to get credit for creating the comic.

    ReplyReply
  107. 107
    jharp says:

    @TriassicSands:

    We’re getting bald eagles in the suburbs of central Indiana. I have seen several. In neighborhoods. I get the idea they are doing very well.

    And we get the sand hill cranes. Very cool. And they seem to be doing quite well.

    Canada geese on the other hand…..something needs to be done. They are polluting our waterways.

    ReplyReply
  108. 108
    J R in WV says:

    We have lots of these guys around our place. Years ago one of the old farmers, original settler family in this hollow, had one dead lying on a barrel top – they used to think that the woodpeckers were damaging their trees, instead of saving them from insects. I held my tongue, as he was very elderly and had been a big help teaching me how to do standard farm stuff, building fences, etc.

    Not long after I was talking about the dead wood pecker with a friend in a lunch tavern when a game warden who overheard us asked about my neighborhood. I was pretty quiet, and then he said “I’m not interested in harassing your elderly neighbor, but areas that have lots of pileated woodpeckers are great turkey habitat. And we’re always interested in where turkey habitat is…”

    So I’ll bet there are a lot of turkeys in your neighborhood.

    Nice photo!

    Don’t forget that your Coolpix can focus down to 3 cm, or just over an inch… so you can do closeup photos of bugs, lizards, water drops, flowers, eyeballs, etc, etc. The long lens far away is fun, but so is the very, very close-up giant flower. Or bug, etc.

    That has always been one of the first things I verify on a potential new camera – how close can it focus? !? And I think that model has a night hand-held setting, which takes multiple exposures all at once, and then blends them into a well exposed photo of a dark place, whether a room with two candles or a starlit forest clearing. New cameras are so Cool…

    I love pileated woodpeckers, they make the most dinosaur-like sound of any animal in North America. Wonderful dinosaurs that fly!

    Did you know that someone could click on a photo, get to it, and put a comment under the photo as if it was a threaded post? Neither did I~!

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  109. 109
    No One You Know says:

    @Sandia Blanca: Love the photo!

    We’ve got a foot of snow that fell overnight. I counted 26 robins in one crabapple tree before I track of who’d been counted. Watched a Bullock’s Oriole argue with one about fruit rights. Life has good moments.

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  110. 110
    Culture of Truth says:

    I’m late to this thread, but I saw one of these up north this summer. Amazing. Like a damn pterodactyl. Very rare these parts. Congrats on the photo!

    ReplyReply

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