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Bug exterminator at work!
Lens: tokina 400 5.6 ATX AF Camera: K3 Photo Location: CT ISO: 1600 Shutter Speed: 1/200s Aperture: F5.6 
Posted By: brewmaster15, 12-12-2019, 12:30 PM

Pileated woodpecker taking care of the Bugs in my Spruce tree... did a thorough job too! so thorough I ended up cutting the tree down!







-al
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12-12-2019, 12:59 PM   #2
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Such awesome birds, and nice pics! Sad to hear about the tree's demise. I read some time ago that they use their tongues in order to avoid concussions. A flock of as much as eight frequents the trees in our yard and they can get noisy from time to time. Always a joy to watch them chirp and argue away. They have the same colors, but different patterns.

12-12-2019, 01:12 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by torashi Quote
Such awesome birds, and nice pics! Sad to hear about the tree's demise. I read some time ago that they use their tongues in order to avoid concussions. A flock of as much as eight frequents the trees in our yard and they can get noisy from time to time. Always a joy to watch them chirp and argue away. They have the same colors, but different patterns.
Thank you! and yes you are right. Their tongues are very unique.. they are more bone and cartilage than ours and specially anchored.. they have other adaptations that protect them. A short summary of them is here...Why Don't Woodpeckers Get Brain Damage? | Mental Floss
12-12-2019, 01:41 PM   #4
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Nice photo of the female Pileated woodpecker. The red patch along her cheek, is what determines male from female, the male doesn't have that patch.

12-12-2019, 01:44 PM   #5
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The Downy and hairy Woodpeckers seem to have killed one of my plum trees, or perhaps the bugs under the bark did it and they just opened her up!
12-12-2019, 01:46 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by brewmaster15 Quote
Pileated woodpecker taking care of the Bugs in my Spruce tree... did a thorough job too! so thorough I ended up cutting the tree down!

-al
Good photograph of the bird.

With so many bug around, I would guess they did more damage than she did; she just enjoyed them before you had their now-habitat cut down and carted away.
12-12-2019, 01:55 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by photolady95 Quote
Nice photo of the female Pileated woodpecker. The red patch along her cheek, is what determines male from female, the male doesn't have that patch.
Thank you ! But I think you got them switched. The Male has the patch, the female does not. https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Pileated_Woodpecker/id#
al

---------- Post added 12-12-19 at 01:59 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by SSGGeezer Quote
The Downy and hairy Woodpeckers seem to have killed one of my plum trees, or perhaps the bugs under the bark did it and they just opened her up!
Bummer on the tree! Generally if they are pecking at a tree, they think they have dinner there.

---------- Post added 12-12-19 at 02:02 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
Good photograph of the bird.

With so many bug around, I would guess they did more damage than she did; she just enjoyed them before you had their now-habitat cut down and carted away.
Thank you!! I bear no ill will to the wookpecker..I enjoyed watch in them work diligently on it. I would have left that tree standing had it not been next to my powerlines..


al
12-12-2019, 02:22 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by torashi Quote
I read some time ago that they use their tongues in order to avoid concussions.
I read that their tongues actually wrap around the back of their brains.

Nice photos of the woodpecker at work.

12-12-2019, 02:30 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by brewmaster15 Quote
Thank you!! I bear no ill will to the wookpecker..I enjoyed watch in them work diligently on it. I would have left that tree standing had it not been next to my powerlines..
Oh yes - I know from experience how a loss of electrical service can affect a household.
12-12-2019, 02:33 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by PJ1 Quote
I read that their tongues actually wrap around the back of their brains.

Nice photos of the woodpecker at work.
Thank you.


Yep some woodpeckers tongues wrap all around their heads and up to the eye sockets where they anchor.. crazy isnt it?
12-12-2019, 04:27 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by brewmaster15 Quote
Thank you ! But I think you got them switched. The Male has the patch, the female does not. Pileated Woodpecker Identification, All About Birds, Cornell Lab of Ornithology
It's been awhile since I used allaboutbirds, I guess I forgot which had the patch. Thanks for letting me know I had them backward.
12-12-2019, 05:43 PM   #12
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Great shots, thanks for sharing!
12-12-2019, 05:48 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by photolady95 Quote
It's been awhile since I used allaboutbirds, I guess I forgot which had the patch. Thanks for letting me know I had them backward.
No problem... If I didnt have my Peterson's guide to help me remember all the little details of the various birds I'd be lost! Even with it sometimes Im lost!

---------- Post added 12-12-19 at 05:49 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by bertwert Quote
Great shots, thanks for sharing!
Thank you for commenting!
Al
12-12-2019, 08:36 PM   #14
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Nice photo. Pillies crave carpenter ants. Given the craters carved into the spruce, I assume the tree was well-infested with ants which would have weakened the tree considerably. It likely would have fallen down eventually with a nudge from the wind if you hadn't cut it down.
12-12-2019, 09:45 PM   #15
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He's really tearing it up with that tree. Must be a pretty wormy piece of wood.
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