The Flicker House

by Helen Smith
(Minong, WI)

We have a large, homemade "flicker house" in our backyard in Northern Wisconsin. Every fall, the house gets cleaned out and then in spring is packed full to the top with fresh sawdust. It is just hilarious to watch the newly arrived flickers every spring. They have to dig out the house. At first they just grab on to the outside of the house and use their beak to dig in. After several days, they are able to get inside and then they keep bringing up sawdust on top of their beaks and "flick" it out of the hole. It is a large,deep house, so this takes quite awhile. Later in summer when the eggs hatch, the male and female are kept busy feeding the young. The young birds are so noisy that we can hear them from 50 feet away. We are able to enjoy these beautiful birds all summer.

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