Red-breasted sapsucker (I’m pretty sure)

There’s a place I like to go where there’s usually no people and it’s at the end of a paved trail on the edge of a field. You can watch the birds and the clouds and it’s just peaceful. I was able to watch this woodpecker for quite awhile from a very short distance! This was probably the best angle I was able to get with a ‘clean’ background.

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Technical Details

Is this a composite: No
Nikon D3400
ISO 800
Slight crop, and brought exposure up by .29 and highlights by +16.


You did a really good job with the color, detail, and focus on this red breasted sapsucker. The exposure is good. In my opinion, what needs improving is the setting. The out of focus branch just to the left of the bird is quite distracting. If you live in the Willamette Valley and live near some woods, this is a likely ID. I am in Olympia, just north of you and I see these occasionally.

@David_Schoen yes, I see what you mean. I might be able to get another chance. I’ve seen him before there, so I think it’s a regular hangout! I have a wildlife of Oregon app on my phone and it was the closest I could guess at this.

As David said, you did a god job of zeroing in on the Sapsucker, but that busy setting with the out of focus foreground branches makes it a great ID image but not as great as an artistic one.

By the way, you can get Sibley, Peterson and IBird all for your phone and Cornell Labs Merlin (an AI program being trained by peoples’ inputs) is supposed to be getting pretty good for ID, as well. Sibley and Peterson are basically web versions of their books, while IBird was built for the web. Don’t trust the drawings in IBird-they’re not accurate, but they also have lots of photos.

Yes, a red-breasted sapsucker and a real pain this time of year. Last year the male drilled several holes in our siding trying to attract a mate and I’ve seen it drumming on a nearby tree this year-the house can’t be far behind. You have nice detail in the sapsucker and maybe a tighter crop would work along with removing the foreground branch and the oof branch in the background.