For the third morning in a row, the thermometer hovers just above freezing as drizzle falls. Woodpeckers are already at work, beating their heads against trees.
A lull in the morning chorus. Contrails of all ages litter the sky like a boneyard. A woodpecker’s fast rattle.
It’s cold, gray and still, but the woodpeckers are living it up: pileateds hammering, red-bellieds whinnying, and a downy drumming his loudest.
High clouds yellow with sunrise appear to have some business off to the east. A downy woodpecker on a dead locust limb fires off a blast beat.
A fresh skin of snow on top of the crust and the deepest day-time silence of the year. I listen to the quiet tapping of a downy woodpecker halfway up the ridge.
Rainbow at sunrise. A small woodpecker has found a very loud dead thing and is bashing his head against it for all he’s worth.
Clouds that looked dark before sunrise are mottled with blue-gray and yellow. Woodpecker blast beats. Wrenish riffs.
Humid and cool. The sun keeps finding new holes in the clouds. The woodpeckers keep drumming.
Clear everywhere except where the sun rises pink, orange and yellow, heralded by small woodpeckers with loud, locust-wood drums.
The first flakes, fine as flour, from a dull gray sky: far edge of the predicted blizzard. A silent crow flies over. A woodpecker knocks.
A vast Sunday-morning silence broken only by mourning dove wings, the soft taps of a downy woodpecker, and the grumbling of my stomach.
Say what you will about cold spring nights; they lead to gorgeous mornings. And what’s that stunning black-and-white bird? Only a downy woodpecker.
Another four inches of light powder. We are rich in snow now. The soundtrack is mostly woodpeckers: downy, pileated, red-bellied.
The thermometer’s big red arrow is at -10°C. A downy woodpecker works the wood’s edge, exploring the bases of trees, chirping loudly.