Subject: [Tweeters] Pileated Woodpeckers in northeast Seattle Date: Jul 30 20:14:02 2009 From: Roger Andersen - nitpicker at comcast.net
I have just joined your list to be able to submit the following, but can already tell that I enjoy everyone's reports. Please forgive me if I don't have the format figured out.
On Sunday afternoon July 19, 2009 in the Lake City residential neighborhood of northeast Seattle, I was standing in my driveway on the west side of 36th Avenue NE between NE 115th and NE 120th about 3:30PM, when a black bird flew about 15 feet over my head quickly followed by a second. My immediate thought was that they were crows, which swarm around here, but no, there was white visible near the base of the wing and their flight was faster and more focused like an arrow than a crow. They landed on the exposed trunk of a pine tree at the edge of our front yard, and I was astonished to recognize them as a pair of Pileated Woodpeckers, their red crests clearly visible. As I watched, they moved about on the vertical pine bark for ~30 seconds. Then I stepped into the house, and called to my daughter to hurry outside. We then both watched the woodpeckers for another ~30 seconds, until they abruptly took off and vanished westward over the trees in the backyard.
I don't know whether this sighting is common or truly remarkable, but to see these two birds in an urban neighborhood was thrilling. At least a decade ago, I twice saw individual Pileated Woodpeckers in wild, deeply forested areas, one at Deception Pass and one at Wallace Falls.