Pileated Woodpecker at Col Danforth Park

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

On a late February day, we were enjoying the beautiful trail that follows Highland Creek.

 

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

The group was alerted to the presence of a pileated woodpecker by the loud, rising and falling call. We also heard a continuous almost barking sound which I had never heard before.

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

Happily Ken Sproule was able to get these wonderful, close-up photos.

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

Small woodlots are not large enough for these big birds: they require at least 100 acres of forest.

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

Our bird is a male as you see by the red “mustache” marks.

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

They make large holes in a very short time in their search for insect larvae and other food.

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

photo: Ken Sproule

The word “pileated” comes from “pileus” which was a pointed or close-fitting cap worn by ancient Romans. The word can be pronounced as either  “pylius” or “pillius.”

photo; Ken Sproule

photo; Ken Sproule

Miles Hearn

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