Red-bellied Woodpecker

I’ve been feeding the squirrels in my backyard for years. I felt guilty after putting a baffle on the bird feeder pole and watching all those poor, pathetic, starving squirrels beg for food. Yeah, I got played, but this isn’t about the squirrels, it’s about the ritual of putting out the peanuts. It starts with a tap on the back door, followed by the squeak of the screen door opening and the crackle of peanuts crashing down onto the deck. If none of that garnered any attention, the clunk of the door closing behind me certainly would. It didn’t take long before I had every creature in the neighborhood rushing over at the mere sight of me, well, almost every creature. One of the few remaining holdouts finally came over today to see what all the fuss was about and he wasn’t disappointed. Like a kid in a candy store this Red-bellied Woodpecker looked on from the safety of the deck railing as a hundred birds and several squirrels down below scrambled for a lightly salted, golden brown nugget of crunchy goodness. Would he partake as well? Yup, he plopped down on the deck almost immediately, grabbed a peanut and headed for the trees! I suspect we’ll be seeing more of him in the near future.

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