Sunday, November 02, 2008

White-breasted Nuthatch

This is a little bird that I used to get mixed up with a Black-capped Chickadee. The first time I noticed one around our feeders I thought it was a Chickadee but then I had that 'somethings not right here' question hovering in my mind. When you see a Chickadee and a Nuthatch together you will immediately notice that the White-breasted Nuthatch does not have the distinctive black chin of a Chickadee, but I had been just seeing the Nuthatch's black cap, white face and gray back.
Another distinctive feature of the White-breasted Nuthatch is the irregular patterned, rufus colouring on its underside. Their feeding habits are noticeably different too as in most cases you will see a Nuthatch feeding upside down! They often go head first down the branch or trunk of a tree, feeding on insects as they go with their long, pointed, slightly upturned bill.
This was another return this week of a long time seasonal resident of Bird Alley. Welcome back little Nuthatch!

18 comments:

Gretchen said...

Those are great close up catches! Just beautiful. :)

gina said...

the little nuthatch is beautiful. good capture!

Mary said...

Great shots of one of my favorite little birds. I think the understide is so pretty and don't mind being "mooned" by him :-) I like to watch him at my wooden feeder. He sweeps his bill back and forth picking through the seeds and tossing the ones he doesn't like...don't know what his criteria of choice might be, but it is funny to watch him do it.

Deborah Godin said...

You sure take great photos, like the one of the nuthatch's rufous "pants" Wonderful detail!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Wonderful pictures of the White-breasted Nuthatch.I needed to see these pictures to remind me that even the 'common' birds are special.

Mike - Fenphotography said...

Great birds Nuthatches, nice pics.

Beverly said...

WOW...I just love it when birders tell other (sometimes new) birders how confusing it can be to catch, in a fleeting look, just what bird you've seen!

Oddly, I just talked about the same thing...but with different birds!

I'd seriously recommend Bill Thompson’s Identify Yourself: the 50 Most Common Birding Identification Challenges ...it has helped me a great deal. (beside's his wife Julie is the illustrator! :) )

Oh...and by the way; I am beyond jealous over the buntings. I've seen a Lazuli Bunting in my yard...and a friend the next town over has had the Indigos; but I've never seen 'em. Dammit!

Good for you; good sleuthing!

i beati said...

whata unique birdhouse in post 2 down- Your blog makes me so relaxed when I visit sandy

Ruth said...

Our white and red-breasted nuthatches have been back at the feeders for about 3 weeks now. I hear them when I walk in the woods as they work the trees along with the woodpeckers. Nice pictures of a hard to photograph bird.

2sweetnsaxy said...

Nice shots!! I just posted a couple of pics of a new visitor to my yard. :-)

Becky and Gary said...

I just love these guys. They are so enertaining.
By the way Ann. Super header!

bobbie said...

Such a pretty bird! Your pictures are just wonderful.

2sweetnsaxy said...

Just an additional note to thank you for naming my bird! :-) You're a peach!!

Rambling Woods said...

I LOVE them Ann..I get such a kick out of their "yank..yank" calls and their picky choosing of just the right seed from the feeder...

petra michelle; Whose role is it anyway? said...

Sandy at I Beati spotlighted your blog today and promised a relaxing and beautiful nature excursion. She was absolutely right! Just lovely. It was soooo nice visiting!
Petra :))

Geraldine said...

Your photography is always a delight Ann. I LOVE your new header. Such a restful stop in my blog visits,thanks for sharing your talents with all of us.

www.mypoeticpath.wordpress.com

Annie said...

What an abundant variety of birds you have. Our immediate neighborhood is so much more limited.

The Zen Birdfeeder said...

I've always loved the pattern and color of their underside!