Date: 10/25/19 5:37 am From: <clearwater...> Subject: [obol] Autumn nesting by Acorn Woodpeckers
Seeing that fledgling being fed by an adult southeast of Philomath yesterday got me wondering: How often do Acorn Woodpeckers nest this late?
According to the species account by Jamie Simmons in "Birds of Oregon: A General Reference" (Hunter et al., eds., OSU Press, 2003) the data on timing of nesting in Oregon are scant, but in a few cases (n=3) fledglings have been noted between early August and mid-September. Yesterday's observation (Oct 25) is well beyond that window.
However, a 15-year study at the Hastings Natural History Reservation in the Santa Lucia Mountains se. of Monterey, California (described in "Population Ecology of the Cooperatively Breeding Acorn Woodpecker," by Koenig and Mumme, Princeton, 1987) reported fledglings as late as Nov 1.
At the Hastings site, autumn nests were rare (only 5 out of 177 nests observed), and were noted in only two years, 1974 and 1979. Both of those were years with high rates of fall acorn storage.
The acorn crop around the mid-Willamette Valley does seem to be very heavy this fall. Has anyone else noticed indications of Acorn Woodpeckers nesting in this season?
-- Joel Geier Camp Adair area north of Corvallis
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