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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Spotted At Stateline Woods

     Our preserve manager pointed out this great example of a Pileated woodpecker's masterpiece as he searched for ants in a tree (the Pileated not our preserve manager!).  Though we sadly did not catch him in action, we will keep looking.  In the meantime, you can look for signs like this to see if there is a Pileated woodpecker in the areas that you frequent.

  Some interesting facts about Pileated Woodpeckers:
  •  They are the largest woodpecker in North America
  • A Pileated pair stays together on their territory year round, they will tolerate interlopers in the winter, but otherwise fiercely protect their territory.
  • The inspiration for Woody Woodpecker came from the Pileated.
  • Their extensive feeding excavations will attract other birds to use as nest sites, or to find left over insects.
  • A lack of cerebral fluid in their skull, a compressible bone, and an inner eyelid that closes milliseconds before pecking all contribute to the woodpeckers ability to not have brain injury with all of the ferocious pecking at the trees.
  • The distinctive sounds of a Pileated woodpecker can be found by going here: http://www.pileatedwoodpeckercentral.com/audio.htm 

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