[birding] Possibly 2 intergrade flickers at Corvallis Hospital

Evan Centanni evan at centanni.com
Thu Oct 22 14:36:52 PDT 2015

For those interested in such things: Yesterday at Samaritan Hospital about
noon, I found 1 and possibly 2 INTERGRADE NORTHERN FLICKERS (that is,
hybrids between Red- and Yellow-shafted subspecies).

The location is at the dead end of Satinwood Rd., across the parking lot
from the front of the Corvallis Clinic (map location available on eBird).
The first sighting was actually from the western rim of the parking lot,
looking into the trees toward the area just past the end of Satinwood. I
got a clear view of a perched flicker with very yellow feather shafts on
the upper side of the wings, a red crescent across the nape, and brown
rather than gray around the face - all marks of a Yellow-shafted Flicker,
except that it also had the bright red malar stripe of a Red-shafted.

Fast forward about 20 or 30 minutes, and I was at the actual dead end of
Satinwood St., looking north into the same general area, when I spotted
what may have been a second intergrade flicker. This one had a black malar
stripe (with narrow red margins), brown face, a red nape crescent that
appeared to be less distinct than that of the first sighting, and what I
thought, for a brief instant at least, were pink feather shafts on the

However, in the end I couldn't be sure whether these were two different
individuals - the malar stripes were different, but I saw only the left
side of the face the second time, and couldn't quite remember if I'd seen
more than the right side of the face the first time. The actual location of
the bird was also very close to the same spot (perhaps even in the same
exact tree?) for both sightings, despite the locations I was standing at
being a hundred feet or more apart.

Does anyone know whether it's normal for an intergrade individual to have
assymmetrical marks? Or whether it would be surprising to have more than
one intergrade Northern Flicker in close proximity?

Happy birding!

Evan Centanni
West of Monmouth

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