Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Black Woodpecker: fresh feeding site

Black Woodpeckers can make some impressive holes when hacking into timber in search of invertebrates. Note that such holes are not nesting cavities. The round hole (with human hand for size comparision) does to a certain extent resemble a cavity entrance, but it is too large and too low on the tree. Note also the resin/sap that has streamed down the trunk from the holes. Photo taken in March 2009 in the Slovak Karst National Park, Slovakia. 

Sunday, 29 March 2009

Gallery: Lesser Spotted Woodpecker male

Male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos minor. Photo of a bird caught for ringing by Josef Chytil, Czech Republic, March 2009.

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Grey-headed Woodpecker and Waxwing

Here is an interesting photo of a male Grey-headed Woodpecker Picus canus seemingly observing a Bohemian Waxwing. Photo by Mike Crutch, Soutok, Czech Republic, March 2009. 

Monday, 16 March 2009

Holes in telegraph-poles

Some woodpeckers bore holes in telegraph poles. It is not clear why they do this as such poles are almost always devoid of invertebrate prey and seldom suitable as nesting-sites being exposed and often situated in busy places such as by roads. Perhaps woodpeckers simple "need" to excavate holes and in doing so in telegraph poles males advertise their presence and home-making skills to potential mates ? 

Friday, 13 March 2009

Grey-headed Woodpecker snapshot

Grey-headed Woodpecker Picus canus. Taken by Mike Crutch at Soutok, Czech Republic, March 2009. Though this bird was a male its red forecrown cannot be seen here.

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Black Woodpecker: old feeding site

Photo of an old feeding site of Black Woodpecker Dryocopus martius.Taken near Pavlov, Czech Republic. The adult man's hand provides a size comparison. Such long, slit-like holes are typically made by Black Woodpeckers when they are searching for tree-living carpenter ants in hollow trunks. 

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Dead Middle Spotted Woodpecker

This unfortunate Middle Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos medius was found dead on a road in Bulgaria. Note the long, sharp tongue.