A bird sits perched on a branch

Species Diversity - Birds

Example: Pileated Woodpecker

The pileated woodpecker has a straight, hard bill for chiseling wood, four strong toes for clinging to bark, and an extraordinarily long, barb-tipped tongue for extracting insects from within the wood of a tree. It spends the day either drilling for food, excavating homes, or drumming songs to announce its whereabouts. It has strong neck muscles and a reinforced skull which safeguard the brain from the shock of pounding on hard surfaces. Bristle-like feathers protect the nostrils from flying sawdust. Pileateds eat about 75% animal matter, mainly insects that can cause permanent damage to trees if the populations are not controlled by predators. Undigested seeds from fruits are dispersed in bird droppings to replant the forest. Other birds and climbing mammals looking for a secure shelter will quickly move into abandoned woodpecker holes.