The Travels of Tug 44

Pileated Woodpecker

This is a female Pileated Woodpecker. The males look the same, except for their cheek-stripe, starting at the back of the beak, which is red on the males and black on the females.   high-res

Pileated Woodpeckers like carpenter ants, termites, and all kinds of wood-boring and other bugs. When these are in short supply, they switch to berries. These photos were taken in February 2018, when no ants or bugs were available, so this one is eating sumac berries.   high-res

Holes drilled in trees by a Pileated Woodpecker tend to be rectangular, and huge. Sometimes it looks like they are making a canoe! Their nest is a cavity drilled into a tree, which takes the male 3-6 weeks to make.   high-res

We see Pileated Woodpeckers now and then, but I seldom get a chance to photo them properly. But this morning, late April 2019, we spotted this female fly right into my back yard. First she inpected all my trees for bugs, and then landed on the lawn next to a rotted stump. The photo was taken directly into the sun which is not ideal, but the conditions made her pretty red hat glow in the sunshine. She then flew behind the stump, out of sight, and started hammering the stump for ants and bugs.   high-res

The Pileated Woodpecker, mother nature's lumberjack.

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