Feathered Friday – Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019

For my most recent Sublime Sunday, I mentioned that during my afternoon wander on August 31st, 2019, I’d ended up with enough photos for a Feathered Friday or two. Well, here’s one of them! However, since I discovered that not enough of my shots of this Pileated Woodpecker visit were clear and sharp enough for my liking, I decided to include the ones that I thought were okay, and then I added in a handful of shots from a visit from March 23rd, 2018 so you could get a better look at how gorgeous these woodpeckers are. I also managed to get a short video as well.

First though, a little bit about this guy that we always refer to as “Woody” because, according to Wikipedia

“Woody Woodpecker is an anthropomorphic animated woodpecker, inspired
by the acorn woodpecker and also resembling the pileated woodpecker…”

And here’s a little blurb from one of my favorite birding sites, Cornell University’s All About Birds

The Pileated Woodpecker is a very large woodpecker with a long neck and a triangular crest that sweeps off the back of the head. The bill is long and chisel-like, about the length of the head. In flight, the wings are broad and the bird can seem crowlike.

Pileated Woodpeckers drill distinctive rectangular-shaped holes in rotten wood to get at carpenter ants and other insects. They are loud birds with whinnying calls. They also drum on dead trees in a deep, slow, rolling pattern, and even the heavy chopping sound of foraging carries well. Their flight undulates like other woodpeckers, which helps separate them from a crow’s straight flight path.

While it’s not uncommon to see these beauties on our property, I thought I’d also look up the symbolic meaning of the bird. This excerpt is from the Conscious Art Studios blog post, Symbolic Meaning of the Pileated Woodpecker

In many cultures around the world, woodpeckers are known for and symbolic of the drumming, and of course within that the heartbeat. They are immediately distinctive when one hears them, and while many may not realize on a conscious level, they can soon help you reconnect with the heartbeat of the Earth…a primal knowing of balance.

The Pileated Woodpecker is the largest in the woodpecker family. The symbolism of the colors are important to his meaning. The black and white is representative of how we look at things, our perspectives, and being able to discern between rational and emotional based situations. This is a meaningful totem when one is being overwhelmed by drama and not able to see clearly the basis of what is truly happening. The red crest is symbolic of power, and in this case, powerful mental faculties.

The Pileated Woodpecker is a Master at his craft, nurturing and teaching those around him to find their rhythm in life, and to stay connected, balanced, and level headed in their thinking. It all leads back to the drumming and the heartbeat.

One last thing before I get started with my latest contribution to the Feathered Friday tag that @melinda010100 has kept flying on the Steem blockchain – be sure to check out the post Melinda did for this week’s Feathered Friday because she has some adorable Ruby-throated Hummingbirds captures!

Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019

Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019
Around 3:30pm, I heard a familiar sound while I was wandering around our yard taking pictures (some of which I posted for the aforementioned Sublime Sunday). I took me a moment, but I finally spotted this Pileated Woodpecker bebopping around what we call the Y tree.

Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019
It looks like he’s visited this tree before, judging from all the big chunks of missing bark.

Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019
He heard me walk over, but didn’t seem to mind the arrival of the paparazzi, probably because I was still a decent distance away.

Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019
Plus, he seemed pretty intent on finding his dinner.

Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019
Given how much he bounced around, I figure he was working up quite the appetite!

Here’s the short video clip. Apologies for the bouncing – even though I was using a tripod, I was still holding the camera so I could follow the movement of the woodpecker. Turns out I got more movement than I’d hoped… 😜


Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019
Not sure if something flew overheard, since I was too focused (HA! Pun intended) on taking pictures, but right after this shot, he took off for a tree further back in the woods.

A zoomed out shot of where I was standing, in relation to the Y tree, which is in the center (although a bit back in the woods) of the shot.


Some extras shots of a Pileated Woodpecker visit on March 23rd, 2018


Not sure if this is the same guy (and actually two were visiting this day) but I was able to zoom so much closer because they hung out in a tree at the edge of our driveway.

It’s so nice when they pose so pretty for the camera!

Almost got a great shot of his tongue sticking out.

Like I said before, you can see that the woodpeckers have been busy with these trees too.


Happy Feathered Friday!

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3 thoughts on “Feathered Friday – Pileated Woodpecker visit on August 31st, 2019

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  1. So cool Traci!I saw my first woodpecker this year on London’s Hampstead Heath…it was european Green Woodpecker but had the same mad red ‘hair’ as yours. Great shots!

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