A pileated woodpecker devoted considerable attention to debugging the remains of a stump in our front yard:
It’s surely a descendant of this one, eleven years ago:
If you’re willing to wait a decade or so, a stump pretty much falls apart on its own, meanwhile providing habitat for critters both great and small.
Update: By popular demand, a slightly pixelated pileated woodpecker:
7 thoughts on “Pileated Woodpecker vs. Stump”
Nice. I hear their call every once in a while but don’t spot them very often.
It’s been converting a senescent maple in the front yard into a spray of wood chips across the driveway, using a better chisel than anything in my collection!
i misread that as “pixelated woodpecker” and enjoyed the resulting mental image
Updated with a pixelated version, because seeing is believing!
Most of our woodpeckers are a lot smaller than that. We get both Downy and Hairy woodpeckers (starling sized), with the occasional flicker (about the same size as a large jay). They all do a good number on stumps, though the bugs do the best on pines. Juniper stumps take forever to reduce.
Our big Audubon reference reports they were once called the Good-God Bird, which seems adequate.
Alma Boykin does an SF series based on a planet called Shikhari. There’s the “Terror Bird”, and then colonists discover there’s a larger relative: the “Holy Terror Bird”, capable of killing a bison-sized critter at one swell foop.
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