As I have done all too infrequently of late I spent almost an hour yesterday at Forest Park’s waterhole where intrepid Queens birders feed the birds all winter long. Because I have a two-year-old and a job in New Jersey I have not been one of those making sure the birds get their servings of suet and sunflower seeds this year which also means that I have gotten to the park in winter less this year than I have since I moved to New York City four years ago. Fortunately, it is such a mild winter that the birds probably haven’t missed my ministrations though the welcoming committee of chickadees, woodpeckers, and nuthatches that greeted Desi and me made me wonder.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker Sphyrapicus varius

Regardless of if they missed me or not I had missed them and Desi and I had a great time watching the birds. Though Desi mostly liked yelling “Woodpecker!” and then throwing sunflower seeds. To each their own I guess…

Downy Woodpecker Picoides pubescens (above and below)

White-breasted Nuthatch Sitta carolinensis

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker Sphyrapicus varius

And though it didn’t work for us this time, Desi did calm down quite a bit when we tried to get Black-capped Chickadees in close for sunflower seeds. How close? Well, let’s take a look at a shot that I took with my iPhone on our last visit, shall we? Please forgive the lousy focus: I am still learning how to get good images out of my iPhone’s camera.

Black-capped Chickadee in the hand

We’ll be back at Forest Park as soon as we are able!

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Written by Corey
Corey is a New Yorker who lived most of his life in upstate New York but has lived in Queens since 2008. He's only been birding since 2005 but has garnered a respectable life list by birding whenever he wasn't working as a union representative or spending time with his family. He lives in Forest Hills with Daisy, their son, Desmond Shearwater, and their indoor cat, B.B. His bird photographs have appeared on the Today Show, in Birding, Living Bird Magazine, Bird Watcher's Digest, and many other fine publications. He is also the author of the American Birding Association Field Guide to the Birds of New York.