[Tweeters] flocking fledgling flickers

Patti Loesche loes at uw.edu
Mon Aug 1 22:56:41 PDT 2016


I live in Seattle between Woodland Park Zoo and the ship canal. Yesterday two separate neighbors, eight and 10 blocks away, told me of a flock of a dozen or so birds flying from tree to grass to feed. Although the neighbors aren’t birders, the concentration of birds made them take notice. Both initially thought starlings because of the flocking behavior but then reliably identified the birds as flickers (long bills, white rumps, but drab). Later (7:30 pm), I too saw a flock of at least a dozen FOY flickers doing the same, perhaps the same flock.

Flickers are common in this neighborhood (although much less common in the last two years as big hardwoods have been replaced by, you know, urban density). It seems early for migratory flocking, and besides all the birds were young. But despite all the flicker activity here over the years, if flicker fledgling flocking is common before migratory flocking, I haven’t observed or read about it before. Anyone else seeing this?

Patti Loesche
Fremont, Seattle


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