Sunday, 3 May 2015

The Green Woodpecker - A welcome visitor

In past summers, we have regularly had Green Woodpeckers visiting our lawn to feed on ants.

It was with great pleasure then that I looked out of my workroom window earlier this week to see this beauty pecking happily at our grass. He (it is a male, I think, as it is just possible to see the signifying red patch in his 'moustache' beside and below his beak in an enlarged version of this photo) walked gently up and down feeding for almost 15 minutes.


The Green Woodpecker (Picus viridis) is quite a large bird and is relatively common in Southern England. We often hear them calling as if they are laughing in the copse of trees next to our garden. They have long, sticky tongues with which they seek out ants and other insects in tree bark, meadows and, yes, lawns.

One year, in a previous house, we had a family nesting in a conifer in our garden and the adults spent hours investigating our lawn for ants. Later, the young did test flights round the garden flying from tree to tree for 10 days or more - such a joy.

We wait with hope to see what will materialise here this season ...


4 comments:

  1. The Delinquent Dog and I disturbed one on our walk just last week - so lovely aren't they.

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    1. They are lovely and I especially like their laughing call.

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  2. Hi Margaret ! Interesting bird !
    I have been housesitting and just back ... while there found a dead Northern Flicker on the deck. Had never seen one before ... I'll blog about it later.

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    1. Your Northern Flicker was completely new to me - he's beautiful. What a pleasure it was to meet him!

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