Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus)
The Red-headed Woodpeckers were every bit as active as their endangered cousins, and I got several good looks at both adult birds as they flew to and from their nest cavity. As soon as one would complete a few trips, the other would fly out to begin a new round of foraging, leaving room for the first parent to enter the nest and take over babysitting duties.
After watching these birds for a short while, I gave up my prime viewing spot to another birder who had joined me and headed deeper into the pine forest. The trail was lined in several places with wildflowers of all sorts. I can only imagine how beautiful the area must have looked a month ago when the spring flowers were in full bloom.
A volunteer organization has placed a number of bluebird nestboxes around the area, and I saw at least three that are in use.
Eastern Bluebird female (Sialia sialis)
The woods were full of life, from the cawing of crows and the happy calls of cardinals, mockingbirds and pine warblers to the fluttering of a myriad of butterflies and dragonflies.
And while I didn't see any of the other woodpecker species that normally summer in the area, like the Downy and the Red-bellied woodpeckers, the nesting Red-cockadeds and the abundance of Red-headed Woodpeckers that were all over the park were more than enough to satisfy my woodpecker cravings.
All in all, a fantastic morning of birding to kick off the summer season!