nesting in Walnut Creek


Well, we were hoping the Chickadees would use our patio nest box, but when they have taken my hair from the green mesh avocado bag, they leave the patio toward the street. Time will tell.

For the fourth day in Heather Farm Park, a male Downy Woodpecker has been excavating a nest hole on the west side of the large, mostly natural pond.  I arrived before 8 AM today and did not see him.  I thought maybe it was because of some kind of woodpecker union work rules, but he had another union in mind.  While watching sparrows grab seeds I threw, I turned around just in time to see the female Downy arrive and then he copulated with her.  Usually this type of thing is fairly quick, but after a moment, he dropped his left wing alongside her body; possibly his right, too, but I could not see.  Anthropomorphically, it seemed to be a bit of post connubial bliss cuddling.  In a couple of minutes he was at work on the nest hole.  I was told by a friend that he had seen the female working, too.

Another birding friend told me about a Bushtit nest, and sure enough I found it this morning.  It is a bit of a poor site selection, being in a bush around which many members of the general public walk--not a lot of privacy.  I wonder if it will be successful.

And the first Canada Goose goslings were seen at the concrete pond, seven of them with bright yellow feathers.  They attracted a number of walkers with cell phones.

Hugh B. Harvey
Walnut Creek