White Rock Lake in Dallas, Texas is a wonderful example of biodiversity in the midst of urban sprawl. The objective of this blog is to promote White Rock Lake as a destination, to capture the essence and beauty of the lake, and to portray it as the living, breathing organism that it is.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
Northern Flicker Woodpecker at White Rock Lake
Saturday, March 17, 2012
As you walk around the wooden areas of White Rock Lake, you
may hear a sound that resembles a short drum roll – the “drumming” of
woodpeckers. This time of year, from late Spring to early Summer, the male
woodpeckers “drum” to attract a mate.
Northern Flicker woodpecker on the lawn at Sunset Bay March 17, 2012
Of course, woodpeckers peck away at the bark of trees for
other reasons as well, such as to make a nest and also to find food.
The image above is of a Northern Flicker woodpecker and is a beautiful example of the black bib that these woodpeckers have on their chest.
Have you ever listened carefully to the woodpeckers
drumming? They strike the bark of a tree some eight times per second, about 500
times per minute, and with such great force that if a human bashed their head
that hard just once, they would probably die.
Northern Flicker's eat mainly ants and beetles, digging for them with their strong beaks.
The reason woodpeckers don’t end up with severe head trauma
when they drum is all in the design of their beak. It is designed somewhat like
a shock absorber in a motor car and is independent of the skull. The skull is
thus protected from harm when the bird decides to start pecking furiously, as
woodpeckers are supposed to do.
You would not expect to find a woodpecker on the ground, but Northern Flicker's eat mainly ants and beetles, digging for them with their strong beaks. And can you believe that with all that drumming and digging, woodpeckers never have to sharpen their beaks?
If ever you wanted evidence of divine design, go find
yourself a woodpecker.