unusual woodpecker visited us today!

in Feathered Friends3 months ago (edited)


The title says it all: unusual woodpecker visited us today. It is 'Dendrocopos major' (Большой пестрый дятел in Russian), to be precise. There are 7 species of woodpeckers around, but i have seen only this one. Last winter we made a tele-walk with my baby and were lucky to shoot this bird in the local park, and now, at my village site, it is the 2nd time I meet and shoot this bird. It is not that rare... but definitely not the one you meet every day on regular basis.


Actually, he spent pretty much time on our lawn. Thats where I noticed him. I happily stepped back to the house, and equipped the camera with my 70-300mm telephoto lens...


He let me come close enough, but I didnt understand what did he was obsessed with there... maybe, he wanted to divercify his larvae and beetles menu with some fresh strawberries? or is it sounds like a fantasy.

I started clicking the shutter and didnt notice that I have unsuitable manual settings left from previous macro session. So, I shamelessly overexposed half of the pics. Still saved something from the .raw files to show you, not that excellent, but curious.


On this capture I noticed that he closes his eyes while doing his job -- maybe, it happens on the peak of extasy? I dunno is this rare or typical, does anyone have seen it in their birding sessions?.. curious.


His 'closed eyes' are even more vivid and noticeable on the other pic.


Cropped and unresized version of same frame.





Two times I tried to come at even closer distance, that 2-3 metres, and both times he stepped back: firstly from the lawn to a near-standing birch tree, and then, to a more distant aspen. At this point I've made a dozen stereotype captures and it turned out I will not be allowed to a closer distance... So, I made this last frame and rounded up!


I paused contributing to the f-f community recently; I just dont make fresh pics, I am all into macro photography right now (when I have a spare time and good lighting -- most of the time I have rain, and a showel in my hands, instead of a camera, hehe. I like to work with a shovel, too!).

And I also have to note, that 'wild' birds dont have this faith in men like the city birds do, and tend not to let anyone come closer... they hide at the trees' crowns at a safe distance, and there's nothing to be done here, my 300mm tele doesnt work against them... Oh, and no impressive biodivercity: magpies, blackbirds, finches... and probably thats all.

location: Russian countryside July 2020 natural lighting
camera/lens: Canon 350D 70-300mm raw-conv.
f 6.3 t 1/400 ISO 200 ---

It reminds me of the downy woodpeckers I see around here.

to be precise, it is 'Dendrocopos major' (Большой пестрый дятел in Russian), we have 7 species around, but i have seen only this one.

All with slightly different patterns on their back.

I think his markings are a bit more distinctive than many of the other Woodpeckers I commonly see! Quite a lovely bird. If I was using my beak has a hammer and causing wood chips to fly I would probably closed my eyes too!
Your photos are great and thanks for sharing them with the Feathered Friends Community

ah! so you think he close it to protect the eyes from wood chips? huh, that simply didnt come to my mind. I think its realistic and totally correct. silly me. or I just have a bit exaggerated imagination :)
glad you enjoyed the pics. tnks for the tip -- and !BEER back.

ps. no, i dont think those are great... lets say: good :)))

I think most all bird pictures are great, so yours rank right up there!

I totally made that up about the wood chips! I have never even noticed that they close their eyes. I'll pay closer attention.

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Little fellow is looking straight at you (us) in the third picture. You certainly have the bird's attention.

yes, I did, hehe :) you deduced it well. I was annoying curious type, who invaded in his space two times. I tried to come closer than 3 metres - he flew off to another spot :))) on the last picture you see, he decided to take position where I could not approach at all, and s topped bothering about me 8-)


Oh, you're not alone my friend, I know that very well. When I make macros and change the lens it often happens to me that I take a few photos with the wrong settings. Mostly I have too high ISO values.

But you have taken some really cool shots, @qwerrie 👍😀 and I would be glad if the woodpeckers around here were as nice as yours, so that I could take some photos of them.

It's a Great spotted Woodpecker (German: Buntspecht) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_spotted_woodpecker

Cheers and !BEER

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Thanks for these wonderful shots you got here ! 😊 💜


Excellent photos, @qwerrie! Incredible details on the little guy! 🤗