This afternoon I counted six acorn woodpeckers standing on the lee side of the telephone pole in front of my house as a steady rain fell. I was a bit surprised, but pleased, to see them braving the inclement weather. From time to time, one would flutter to a new position on the pole, usually setting off a general rearrangement within the group. Once in a while, one or another would peck at the pole, extracting some tasty snack. The looked so odd clinging to the vertical surface that I had to chuckle. The entire group remained on the pole for more than an hour, and one persistent bird was still there as the light faded from the gray sky. They are remarkably hardy little fowl, and far more entertaining than the obnoxious blue jays. I never noticed acorn woodpeckers around here until a couple of years ago, but they have since become one of my favorite winter sights. Whatever the change in the climate or the local ecosystem that brought them here, I at least have gotten much pleasure from their presence.