Thursday, 30 October 2014

Woodpecker damage ?

Here is a fine example of the foraging work of a Black Woodpecker Dryocopus martius. An impressively large hole has been opened up on this trunk, big enough for a man's hand to easily fit inside. Looking at this, it might be thought that the woodpecker has killed the tree.. but has it really? The tree here is also adorned with fungi and the woodpecker workings are fairly fresh, newer than the fungi. It is clear that the tree was already doomed before the woodpecker opened it up in search of the invertebrates that live inside the rotten timber. And that is the key point, that woodpeckers that hack into timber are looking for prey and most prey lives inside trees that are already dying or dead. 

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Urban Woodpeckers: Syrian Woodpecker

Across Europe (and indeed the world) there are woodpeckers which have adapted to live in urban environments. Here is an example, Syrian Woodpecker Dendrocopos syriacus, which is rarely found in forests proper, rather inhabiting open woodlands, orchards, parks, gardens etc, in rural villages, towns and in major cities. In this photo a bird clings to a wooden utility pole along a village street. (Gerard Gorman, Hungary, October 2014).  

Monday, 13 October 2014

Gallery: Female and nestling Eurasian Three-toed Woodpecker

An adult female Eurasian Three-toed Woodpecker Picoides tridactylus feeding
a nestling. At this age, both chicks can show some yellow on the forecrown. Image taken in Lower Austria in spring 2014 by Thomas Hochebner.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Gallery: Black Woodpecker

An adult male Black Woodpecker Dryocopus martius looks out from its nest-hole in a beech tree. Photo by Thomas Hochebner taken in Lower Austria.