Dryocopus Pileatus

>> Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The Pileated Woodpecker is the largest woodpecker in North America. It's range includes the Eastern U. S., most of Canada and parts of the West coast of the U. S. But, until this week I had never seen one. Connie called for me to come into the living room. She was looking out into the back yard and pointed out to me a huge woodpecker. The photo, one of only 2 she was able to snap, was taken through the glass of the back door as well as the glass and screen of the storm door. So, it isn't real clear.

The Pileated Woodpecker is about the size of a crow, 16-19 inches in length, with a wingspan of 26-30 inches. The one we saw was a female. The male, illustrated below, has a red crown and forehead and red mustache stripe. She has no red mustache and the forehead is grey to yellow-brown in color.

We hope she returns and brings her mate with her. We keep suet cakes out for the woodpeckers so maybe that will attract them.


dp December 24, 2008 at 5:43 PM  

Noisy birds, they are. They seem to be unable to fly without making noise. I've watched them land on a tree while hunting. They continue to make noise even then. They have a distinct sound. Neat to see them, though.

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