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Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers

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Yesterday I saw a pair of Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers preparing their Nest Hole in preparation for egg laying. The male seemed to be doing all the duties whilst the female kept leaving and returning. I only managed to get shots of the male.

Our local area has a large number of Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers probably the most commonly seen Woodpecker here. This is interesting because every resource I read about their presence in Portugal states that they are uncommon. I will be keeping an eye on this nest site and hope to grab some feeding photos if they are successful at breeding. The Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers seem to be less bothered about my presence than any of the other Woodpecker species which means they tolerate me getting quite close.

Here’s a few photos I snapped of him.

Male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker
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Morning Dog Walk: A Pair Of Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers Making A New Nest Hole

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I take a camera along on my Dog Walks to bring you some of the sightings that I see on my morning walks, these photos are rarely going to be great quality as its hard enough keeping an energetic Dog entertained and get close enough to anything. They also help me identify where species are so that I can plan to return.

Wally was happy this morning as we walked up Eagle Ridge. He’s not been up there for ages due to the risk of Processionary Caterpillars. This risk is gone now so we headed up. The ridge lived up to its name as we spotted a large bird (too far away for a photo). It looked more like a Common Buzzard, but as the name in Portuguese is Águia-d’asa-redonda which translates to Round-winged Eagle, I’m claiming another Eagle spot from the ridge!

On the way back down I could hear the tapping of a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker and in fact there were a pair present with the Female flying back and fore and the Male busy making a hole. I have loads of photos to share and as they didn’t really care I was there, this will be a new spot to hopefully get some feeding shots. Oh and if you were watching my live Instagram feed earlier you may have heard me call it a Lesser Spotted Kingfisher as I ended! Ha ha ha ha!

I will share more the photos soon, but it’s Easter and the party is about to begin in the village’s “Feira do Folar”.

Here is one of the male tapping on the tree, not at the hole, but I think he was on his break looking for insects. Look how he almost grimaces and closes his eyes when he taps.


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Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers In Abundance

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Due to the terrain and the number of trees in the local area, we have large numbers of Woodpeckers and it seems that the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker outnumbers all the other species (Greater Spotted, Iberian Green and Wryneck).

I often hear them tapping away on trees and their call which is similar to the Iberian Green’s “laughing call” but softer and cuter. The name “Lesser” is often thought that its because they are seen less often but it actually means smaller. In other words a smaller version of the Greater Spotted Woodpecker. They are the size of a sparrow and the female is often overlooked due to its black and white colours. The male as seen in the photo below has a red crown.

Here is a photo from a few mornings ago. It’s quite heavily cropped so not my usual quality of detail.

{Click image(s) to view on Flickr - opens in new tab}

Male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker - Pica-pau-galego (macho) - Dencrocopos minorContinue reading >>

Morning Dog Walk: Males Singing and Drumming For Females…..And, Of Course, Bluey!

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I take a camera along on my Dog Walks to bring you some of the sightings that I see on my morning walks, these photos are rarely going to be great quality as its hard enough keeping an energetic Dog entertained and get close enough to anything. They also help me identify where species are so that I can plan to return.

This morning’s walk was full of a few surprises, first, I narrowly missed an opportunity to photograph an Egyptian Mongoose as it scurried away for cover. This is the 2nd time I’ve seen them in the same location in the morning, so I will have to do a stake-out soon.

The Woodpeckers are drumming like crazy today, it is like a building site with all the knocking. I noticed a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker tapping a metal strip on an electricity pole, it was a fair distance away, but took a snap anyway. Notice his red cap, this is how you tell the males and females apart as the females don’t have one. Of course, the females will not be drumming either as the males perform this to attract a mate.

{Click image for a higher resolution}


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Morning Dog Walk: Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Drumming (Video)

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I take a camera along on my Dog Walks to bring you some of the sightings that I see on my morning walks, these photos are rarely going to be great quality as its hard enough keeping an energetic Dog entertained and get close enough to anything. They also help me identify where species are so that I can plan to return.

You may remember a post (excuse the pun) a while back about the damage Woodpeckers have do to our Telephone pole. Yesterday’s walk (there wasn’t one this morning as I was recovering from Wales winning the Grand Slam and 6 Nations Rugby!) I spotted a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker on the very same pole.

Sorry for the not so steady video, but videoing hand held at 400mm isn’t easy. The jangling you can hear is Wally’s collar and the chirping is from a large family of House Sparrows.

Woodpeckers drum at this time of year to attract females and you can often hear them drumming on metal and concrete poles as they are much louder than wood. He who drums the loudest will attract the females. As you’d expect, the drumming is a lot quieter than the Great Spotted Woodpecker but still carries a long distance.

{Remember to watch in HD if possible}

Morning Dog Walk: Woodpeckers And Pipits

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I take a camera along on my Dog Walks to bring you some of the sightings that I see on my morning walks, these photos are rarely going to be great quality as its hard enough keeping an energetic Dog entertained and get close enough to anything. They also help me identify where species are so that I can plan to return.

What a difference a day makes, yesterday it felt like summer, today even though its not cold it is very overcast with some (still needed) rain forecast. The light was terrible for photography, but I took the camera on our walk anyway! I did go back to look for the Blue Rock Thrush from yesterdays Nature Walk, but no sign of it.

The Woodpeckers were active this morning and this pesky Great Spotted Woodpecker was on our Telephone Pole again! Last time, I made the (terrible) joke of the Internet being unstable due to the holes in the pole, this time…… I think there’s a tap on the line, yes, I should give up the one-liners!


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