Red-cockaded Woodpecker

by lsorlows
Last updated 8 years ago

Discipline:
Science
Subject:
Earth Sciences

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Red-cockaded Woodpecker

Red-cockaded Woodpecker

Picoides Borealis

The Red-cockaded Woodpecker historically lived throughout the southeastern United States and numbered in the millions. Now it is estimated that there is less than 20,000 birds left. The main cause for the falling number of birds is habitiat destruction. The woodpeckers need old pine forests, with trees being older than 60 years, in order to roost and nest. Many of the old forests disappeared due to developement and logging; and now there are few places with old enough pines that contain enough acreage for the woodpeckers.

Now, in North Carolina, the Red-cockaded Woodpecker, is mainly found along the coast and coastal plains.

There are steps being taken in order to save this woodpecker species. Current existing nesting clusters are banned from forestry activities in order to save old and large diameter pine trees. Deciduous growth is limited by burning and other methods due to woodpeckers disliking too much deciduous growth. And last off, artificial nesting cavities are being built in appropriate trees because the woodpeckers have shown they will recolonize an area with artificial cavities.


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