Red-breasted Nuthatch
Red-breasted Nuthatch. Pictures by Captain Yves with a zoom lens.

THE NATURAL WORLD OF SOUTHERN VANCOUVER ISLAND THROUGH THE LENS OF CAPTAIN YVES

They get their names from jamming nuts into tree bark and then hitting them with their bill to “hatch” out the seeds within!

The Red-breasted Nuthatch collects resin globules from coniferous trees and plasters them around the entrance of its nest hole.

The resin may help to keep out predators or competitors. The nuthatch avoids the resin by diving directly through the hole.

Red-breasted Nuthatches move quickly and in any direction across tree trunks and branches. When moving downward they typically zigzag, keeping their grip by relying on the large claw on their one backward-pointing toe on each foot.

Agitated males may call at each other while pointing their heads up, fluttering their wings, and swiveling back and forth.

Males court females by turning their backs to them, singing, and swaying from side to side with crest feathers raised, or by flying together in an exaggerated display of slowly fluttering wings or long glides.

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