Those amazing woodpeckers!

Woodpeckers are my favorite family of birds, and I count myself fortunate that there are many different species in my neighborhood. They are year-round residents, quite vocal, and show up regularly at my suet and seed feeders in the winter.

Most woodpeckers excavate new nest cavities every year to raise their young. Once they’re done raising the current year’s brood, their nesting hole can become a home for many other animals. Pileated woodpeckers (pictured below) are the largest woodpeckers in North America, and their size and strong bills make them especially good at building homes for their families, and many other animals. A pileated woodpecker’s nest cavity is likely to later be home to owls, wood ducks, flying squirrels, tree squirrels, weasels, and raccoons.

Courtesy of For Fox Sake Wildlife Rescue

I’m fortunate that a pair of pileateds visits my feeders every morning in the winter. Where I lived previously, they preferred the safety of the deep woods and showed no interest in the bird feeders. The woodpeckers here, on the other hand, have become habituated to coming to feeders due to the number of people who feed them. They learn, and teach their young, that even if it’s a bit scary, bird feeders offer good stuff!


4 thoughts on “Those amazing woodpeckers!

  1. I remember the Pileated friends at your home. Loved seeing them and hearing them. Quite dramatic to watch.

    • I was thrilled the first time a pair showed up at the suet feeders. I got to see them up close, but had to be very sneaky about watching them…the slightest movement and they would take off!

    • They are fascinating birds, but really skittish of people. You are lucky to have…wild horses! I was a horse person many years ago. They are magnificent animals!

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