Giant Woody Woodpecker, originally uploaded by Lifeinthenorthwoods.com Happy New Year. This Pileated Woodpecker must not have been as camera shy as the one’s around my place… excellent! This reminds me of some things I learned the other day watching a PBS Nature special. Every time a woodpecker’s bill hits the wood, up to 20 times a second face first knocking, the force is 20 times a boxer’s knockout punch.1 The force Woodpeckers can withstand the force of the constant blows against their face essentially because the muscles around their skulls retract back to absorb the force of the blows while their incredibly long and muscular tongues go back and wrap up and around the skull to cushion it! And some woodpeckers even have an inner
Pileated Woodpecker Archive
There are approximately 200 different kinds of woodpeckers in the world. In Washington State we have four native woodpeckers: The Pileated Woodpecker, the Northern Flicker, the Downy Woodpecker, and the Red-Breasted Sapsucker. At least three of these live in the Redmond Wetland Mitigation, our backyard. This of course made it easy for us to find these great woodpeckers. As it were, one of the first birds we caught on camera (and video) was the Pileated Woodpecker, Dryocopus pileatus, but we couldn’t get a very good photo at the time. Today, we got a few better photos. They are mischievous little buggers. They like to look away or hide way up in the trees. I think they prefer not to have their photographs taken. You might
We added an arm to the bird feeder on the back porch and then added a suet case. This has attracted a few new birds. We will try to get photographs of them sometime soon. However, one regular visitor now is the downy woodpecker. He hangs out for long periods of time, pecking away at the suet. How adorable! =) They are similar to the pileated woodpecker (think woody wood pecker) but they don’t have the red tuft and are much smaller. The downy woodpecker is the smallest woodpecker in North America. It likes to eat insects, larvae, eggs, sunflower seeds and suet from backyard feeders. They are found throughout Washington State year-round. Lucky us! =) We have since added another post about the Downy
Ha-ha-ha-ha-hahahahaha… woody woodpecker was fashioned after today’s bird, the Pileated Woodpecker. He’s sooooo cute. It is about the size of the crow which is actually large for a woodpecker. I wouldn’t have thought they’d be so small really. I don’t know why. Maybe I watched too many cartoons growing up and not enough birds in the trees. These woodpeckers peck at the wood to get sap and ants. Interestingly enough, they peck square holes in the trees. They peck so hard, they can break smaller trees. And the holes they peck into trees often become homes for smaller birds. The Pileated Woodpecker likes my neck of the woods, the Pacific Northwest, lucky me! =) Listen to the pileated woodpecker here (Source: Cornell Lab of Ornithology).