5.750 x 8.250 inches
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Beverley Harper Tinsley
Painting - Watercolor And Graphite
A tiny, downy woodpecker rests on a branch, between acrobatic stunts, running up and down the tree, hanging precariously from tiny limbs and branches, seeking food. The soft black and white plumage is punctuated with a spot of bright red. These birds frequent the park-like backyard of my parents� house in Lakewood, Colorado, near the foothills.
Because they are small and soft looking, these birds are adorable, and they are extremely entertaining to watch due to the high activity level, and agile antics.
The downy woodpecker is the smallest species of woodpecker in North America, ranging from 5.5 to 7 inches in length. It is mainly black on the upperparts and wings, with a white back, throat and belly and white spotting on the wings. There is a white bar above the eye and one below. They have a black tail with white outer feathers barred with black. Adult males have a red patch on the back of the head whereas juvenile birds display a red cap. Downy Woodpeckers forage on trees, picking the bark surface in summer and digging deeper in winter. They mainly eat insects, also seeds and berries. In winter, especially, Downy Woodpeckers can often be found in suburban backyards with trees.
December 15th, 2012
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