Pileated Woodpecker – Pileated

Pileated

The image presented here is of a Pileated Woodpecker which is considered to be the largest member [16″-19″ in height] of the North American woodpecker clan … unless you still hold out hope for the existence of the Ivory-billed Woodpecker. The capture demonstrates the prodigious dimensions of the creature’s chisel-like beak and its stoutly nailed toes, the latter adapted for clinging to tree bark while it hunts for ants and larvae. It was made in our backyard while the woodpecker sought out prey on our plum tree.

A Picidae I be
Which means beware, Oh Tree
For as I seek
With massive beak
The grubs and ants in thee

My toes latch onto bark
They aid my foraging lark
With nails dug deep
I plan to reap
I'll surely leave my mark

~ Anecdote, poem and Pileated Woodpecker capture, Pileated © Jerry L. Ferrara