Looking Up

Make sure you dont get in over your head when you work on this red-breasted nuthatch.

By: Jerry Simchuk

The red-breasted nuthatch is one of North America’s four nuthatches. These birds have short tails and long bills and they typically climb head down as they feed on insects found in the crevices of the trees. The red-breasted is a medium-sized nuthatch, measuring 4.5 inches in length, with a rust-colored breast and belly that makes it stand out from the others.

For many years while living in Montana I was able to watch and observe these fun little birds darting around up, down, and all around my pine trees. By placing suet feeders in the trees just off the back deck near the dining room I got a viewing center of never-ending activity. More times than not I watched the nuthatches heading down the tree or hanging on the feeder head down. It made it easy to come up with the title of “Looking Up” for this carving.

Before starting any project, gather as much reference material as you can find. I surround my work area with photos, magazines, books, and study skins.


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