Despite the title of this post, these two similar woodpeckers were not fighting. Indeed, I have not yet photographed them next to each other to compare their size and plumage details.
The Downy Woodpecker is most common. It measures 6 3/4 in (17 cm) and often exhibits an inconspicuous "downy powderpuff" in front of its eyes. Here is one at the suet feeder:
Note the placement of the male Downy's red occipital patch and the black bars on his white outer tail feathers:
For comparison, here is the larger (9 1/4 in / 24 cm) and proportionately longer-billed Hairy Woodpecker:
This male's red patch is split in two by a black band, a variable trait. He also lacks the outer tail feather markings. (When I first learned this my mnemonic was "The Hairy Hain't got Hash marks"):
Despite their significant difference in size, they sometimes can be difficult to separate in the field. While birds in the hand (or on the nearby feeders) often appear smaller than expected, those in the distance may seem to be bigger. Their calls and drumming patterns differ. The head pattern on the Hairy may vary considerably in different parts of its range. It also is regionally more variable in length, but the sizes of these two species do not overlap.
The pair of Northern Cardinals disappeared for almost a month in mid-November. Now they are back in the yard (photographed through the window):
A Red-tailed Hawk roosted in the back yard as the sun was about to set directly behind. It took quite a bit of processing to obtain a halfway decent image:
Two Carolina Wrens were eating seeds beneath the feeders (which I take inside every evening). Predominately insect-eaters, they usually favor the suet:
Through the windows, I obtained rather soft but endearing photos of a Black-capped Chickadee:
Bright lichens covered the south side of boulders in the front yard:
There was a particularly colorful sunset on January 2:
We had a dusting of snow earlier this week. At 7:15 AM the Ring camera at our main "front" door alerted us to the presence of a Red Fox. It entered running at full speed down the steps and tried to surprise two Gray Squirrels which were scavenging under the feeder locations. Watch the entire video as the fox fails to catch its quarry and returns to see if there are any more squirrels. Then, the fox moves across the back of the property, entering the rear lawn:
The fox, first visible to the far right, traversed the entire length of the fence along the drop-off at the far edge of the lawn:
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =