Date: 1/27/17 2:15 pm From: Joe Roller <jroller9...> Subject: [cobirds] Juvenile Yellow-bellied Sapsucker seen around 2 PM at Wash Park (Denver)
Jason Bidgood spotted and he and I watched the continuing bird from before til at least 2:20 today, when I had to leave. It was still in the conifer grove between Smith Lake and E Virginia Avenue in Washington Park. The bird was hard to find, as "just sat there" a lot, but easier to see when it flew from tree to tree. It surprised me at one point by landing in a mature oak tree that bordered Virginia Avenue, but was usually in Ponderosa Pines, where it was usually on the main trunks, high up, and at times on large side branches close to the trunk. There were about 150 American Crows there, more than a simple murder, more like a massacre of crows.
ID points to consider: Williamson's Sapsucker easily ruled out and juvy Red-naped Sapsuckers achieve near adult plumage before November. The great majority of Sapsuckers in the northern half of Colorado have been Yellow-bellied, over the years.
Congrats to Aaron Tucker for finding and identifying this bird, which is a new Washington Park record and probably a new Denver County record.