Date: 3/2/17 1:53 pm
From: Daniel Lane <barbetboy...>
Subject: Re: [LABIRD-L] LALIT: Red-headed Woodpecker declines
From a Baton Rouge standpoint, my own interpretation of local declines may
have to do more with habitat. I have noticed that Red-headed Woodpeckers
seem to prefer Water Oak for nesting, largely because that species of oak
often has lingering dead limbs which must be of a soft enough wood for the
woodpeckers to excavate. After a string of recent hurricanes, and the
damage done by these widowmakers on houses, cars, etc., BR has had an
aggressive program of removing the dead limbs, and indeed Water Oaks in
general, reducing the available nesting habitat for the woodpeckers. Where
I still see the bird in town is where I still see good amounts of Water Oak
with dead limbs. Perhaps it is my bias playing a role in making this link,
but I think that this may be a bigger player in the woodpecker's decline
than Accipiter numbers.

Good birding,
Dan Lane

Research Associate
LSU Museum of Natural Science
Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA


Field Guides Tours Inc.
Austin, Texas, USA
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