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Interesting Facts about Woodpeckers

Woodpeckers feed on insects, nuts and berries. They peck at least 10000 times per day. They have long tongues and are upright birds.

Woodpecker's characterisitcs

I recently saw a Woodpecker up on the Cypress pole in our garden. My first time to witness an incredible view of this bird, and it got me thinking to share my thorough research with you.

Woodpeckers are colourful and smart. These colourful birds are in three different colours and are attractive with sharp-pointed beaks. They hammer on trees to make their nests.

What do you know about Woodpeckers?

What do they mean to you?

Birds are beautiful and are among the hardest workers in nature. The six species of male woodpeckers have been noticed in Iowa. Black, white, and red in colour.

The combination of three colours, and can be found in a redhead, red-bellied, downy, are hairy, and Pileated. Sometimes found in yellow-bellied sapsuckers. I read about the northern brown flicker, it is different from other Woodpeckers.

You won’t find the Pileated woodpecker in northern Iowa, however, it has been noticed around the region. This is the largest woodpecker to be seen in Iowa. It grows to 19 inches in length.

The smallest is the downy woodpecker in Iowa, similar to the hairy woodpecker. The downy woodpecker grows into a small bird about 6 inches in its length.

I noticed the woodpecker hammering into the Cypress pole and for two days, it wouldn’t stop this hammering. Disturbed me pretty early in the morning and made its nest high up in the bark of the tree.

Amazing birds and have long tongues.

The bill of a woodpecker is long, but not as long as its tongue.

Such a length of their sticky or barbed tongues allows for an easier reach to ants deeper in places when pecking out. The texture of their tongues makes the approach easier to pull ant out of reach places.

An interesting fact about their long tongues. It curls up in the back of the Woodpecker’s head. This is between the skull and the skin. I noticed the Woodpecker clinging to the tree. The strong feathers have greater support to cling to trees.

It holds itself firmly on the tree trunk and the two back toes that keep the woodpecker in its spot to have a lean on. The woodpecker’s furry noses protect them from the dust getting into their eyes and feathers on their nostrils keep them safe from splinters.

Woodpecker bills prevent them from getting headaches. The shock of hammering on the tree trunk is distributed through their skull and their thick skull protects the woodpecker from feeling pain.

In my experience with woodpeckers, I have seen that woodpeckers are perfectionists. Every behaviour of the woodpecker is just that.

They are amazing birds!

Woodpeckers nest in tree cavities they have carved in and by themselves.

I witnessed the woodpecker hammering into the Cypress tree trunk and having carved in a perfect circle. Some woodpeckers carve in oblong or oval-shaped nest holes.

I read that woodpeckers carry a common respiratory disease from bird droppings. The disease is not spread commonly to humans. Their faeces spread the disease, not from the bird itself. Histoplasmosis is rarely spread to humans.

Woodpeckers make sounds of music, and in this way, they communicate territory and attract mates. Even when playing they make sounds. Woodpeckers are upright birds, so climbing down a tree are led by their tails first.

Other birds climb down trees head first, for example, the nuthatches crawl down trees. Woodpeckers are not only insect-eating birds. It is believed by scientists that birds access trees in unique ways. To not create competition between the species.

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Woodpeckers eat nuts and berries as well.

You may have noticed woodpeckers on nut feeders, though some would eat acorns and store them for the winter. Some woodpeckers such as the redheaded store their acorns sealed with wet splinters. The seal dries out forming a firm cover over the acorns.

House attics are filled with acorns by woodpeckers as noticed in rural regions. Annually, woodpeckers build new nest holes. They prefer new nest holes due to having other birds nesting in their old nests.

The louder hammering I heard for two days against the Cypress tree got me curious to have a lookup there in the tree trunk. A unique habit and is equipped with a strong beak and its neck is strong too. I was amazed at what a bird is capable of building its nest hole.

The skull prevents the shock and damage to the brain with a sponge-like tissue filled in the skull.

The brain stays intact and doesn’t rattle while the woodpecker hammers into the tree bark. It pecks incessantly. There is a method in this craziness of pecking and noisiness it causes for you. The woodpecker's communication is with other birds and not only when carving into a tree.

To call for a mate, it makes music to attract a mate. Territorial, they seek out hardwood to peck on to create this activity. The sound is louder and an echo in the wild.

A woodpecker’s meal comes from old and rotten wood. The relentless pecking which is at least ten thousand per day to break into the wood. Bugs are pulled out with their sticky long tongue. Larvae and ants are a common diet for woodpeckers.

When in cooler weather, insects hibernate in trees, this makes it easier for the woodpecker to peck on trees until they can reach the insects.

The sizable holes created are large enough for a nest and for the eggs. Both mates work as a team to build their nests. I heard from a local that woodpeckers peck on a house fence if they think it is a suitable location.

Well, there you have fun facts about Woodpeckers.

Drumming and pecking on a daily basis is what a woodpecker does for its living and eating lifestyle.

The problem with the hammering and pecking structures are destroyed. Trees are damaged and we try to avoid having this problem by blocking off the holes to discourage woodpeckers from returning to the same tree or making another nest hole in other trees.

The lifespan depends on the species but can live up to four years old and woodpecker species worldwide are at least 200 species

Woodpeckers live almost everywhere in the world. You won’t find woodpeckers in these regions: Australia, New Guinea, New Zealand, and Madagascar, also in the extreme polar regions.

These are forest birds and some are known to live in woodland habitats. Treeless areas, in rocky hillsides and even in deserts. Other types of woodpeckers are extinct, such as the Ivory-billed woodpecker and the Imperial woodpecker.

The Bar-breasted woodpecker is the smallest in the world.

Woodpeckers are smart and working birds


Woodpeckers in nature

Woodpeckers hammer on tree trunks to carve in nest holes

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Devika Primić


Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 19, 2020:

Thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 19, 2020:

Thanks for that info. Denise, it sounds easier and an option. Hope you well and keeping safe.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on November 18, 2020:

Hi Devika,

You can comment on other's hubs by clicking on the "HubPages" name at the top of your page. It takes you to the feed page and those articles there have a comment option. It is harder to get to and find the one you want but it is a way to comment. Thanks for caring.



Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 18, 2020:

I am not able to comment on your hubs. It is frustrating.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 18, 2020:

MG Singh emge Thank you very much for stopping by

MG Singh emge from Singapore on November 18, 2020:

Devika, this is a nice article, I love wood peckers.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 18, 2020:

Denise McGill Thank you for stopping by. I am unable to comment on most of your hubs. I do appreciate your time.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on November 17, 2020:

These are interesting facts about woodpeckers. We have some up in the mountains of California and they are interesting and loud when pecking a hole.



Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 16, 2020:

FlourishAnyway Thank you for stopping by. Hope all is well with you. I enjoy watching birds and their behaviors.

FlourishAnyway from USA on November 16, 2020:

I have a love/hate relationship with these birds. I love animals and feed birds in my yards but sure don't enjoy when these birds try to peck my house. They are difficult to try to shoo away too! Thanks for the interesting facts about them.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 13, 2020:

Bill thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 13, 2020:

Hi Liz, great to have you here. Woodpeckers are indeed fascinating and most interesting to watch their behaviors. Thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 13, 2020:

Niks it is interesting about birds and woodpeckers are no exception. I enjoy the nature and birds are a part of my beautiful surroundings. Thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 13, 2020:

Louise Powles I wrote about woodpeckers since i had seen one in my garden p on the tree trunk, I just had resarch more and enjoyed doing this. Thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 13, 2020:

Chitrangada Sharan thank you kindly for stopping by. I like Woodpeckers and other birds living in the countryside, it makes me feel so lucky to be able to enjoy nature and what surrounds it.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 13, 2020:

Hi Lorna it has been a while with the many changes going on here. I am glad you got here before they moved it. Thank you kindly for stopping by. I will Tweet all hubs that has been moved.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 13, 2020:

Ann I am pleased you had got to my hub before it was moved. It seems like many of my hubs are moved and in a way I am happy about it. I Tweet the hubs that I am not able to comment on it is a better idea for me. Woodpeckers are amazing birds. Thank you

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on November 12, 2020:

Interesting facts and information about the woodpeckers. I learnt a lot from your well written article.

Thank you for sharing this.

Lorna Lamon on November 12, 2020:

I hope you receive this comment Devika as I thoroughly enjoyed this article. I am a keen bird watcher and the woodpecker is such a clever little bird. Beautiful to look at - I have spotted quite a few this year. Thank you for sharing.

Ann Carr from SW England on November 12, 2020:

I love woodpeckers and you've given us lots of information here, along with some lovely photos and videos.

We get a smaller 'spotted woodpecker' here, which is black and white with red on its head. We also have the green woodpecker which is my favourite. It's bigger than the spotted woodpecker, and has a variety of subtle green feathers. It tends to make large holes in people's grass, to dig up ants! We had a whole family on our lawn at a previous house out in the country near here. They are fascinating. We do get the black and white one in the willow trees next to this house too.

Thanks for the reminder, Devika! So glad this has not been moved yet, so that I get to comment on it. I'm fed up with HP but will stick to non-fiction for a while.


Louise Powles from Norfolk, England on November 12, 2020:

This was very interesting to read. I love woodpeckers. They are such lovely birds. Very clever too!

Niks from India on November 12, 2020:

These facts are indeed very interesting, Being a bird lover, I always look to gather information about birds. I enjoyed reading this article.

Liz Westwood from UK on November 12, 2020:

I recall a painting from many years ago in a room where I used to stay. It was of a woodpecker in a tree. They are fascinating birds.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on November 12, 2020:

Very interesting information, Devika! Thanks for the education.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 12, 2020:

Hi Eric so pleased you learned a lot thank you

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on November 12, 2020:

Really interesting. I sure learned a lot. Thank you.

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