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Pileated woodpecker (2 Viewers)

jmepler

It's just a flesh wound.
No Andy, I can't think why anyone would want to wind someone up about a bird.
I might bow out gracefully now as I can feel a sense of " this woman is crazy" which isn't why I came here. It was nice to chat anyway.

Bye all.
You would be surprised how many times someone perpetrates just this sort of thing. We have learned to be skeptical, especially with something so completely unlikely. Not long ago there was someone that posted a picture of both a Northern Cardinal and a Red-bellied Woodpecker on their backyard bird feeder somewhere in Europe.

Get a picture of the bird. I would love to be proven wrong. Disappearing without a trace is exactly what someone trying to wind us up would do.
 

raymie

Well-known member
United States
Yes I couldn't find anyone else who has saw one either. It's not a case of "if" what I saw was a pileated pecker, I am 100% certain of what I saw and even though you clearly don't believe me, it doesn't concern me. I'm not crazy, I know it was there, I know I chased it before it ate my blue tits chicks and I know I didn't imagine the whole thing or it might be best if I'm locked up !

What concerns me is how it came to be in my garden and if they are being brought over illegally as I'd hate to think of them being caged up for human entertainment as I hate zoos too. I sincerely hope not but I can't help but think they must be which upsets me.
I don't mean to hijack this thread but zoos are extremely important for conservation and the animals are usually well cared for.

I would love to see a photo of this supposed Pileated Woodpecker.
 

txpossum

Active member
United States
From what I can find, if what you saw was in fact a Pileated Woodpecker, it would be not only the first record in Great Britain, but the first record in the entire Western Palearctic.

If it was a Pileated Woodpecker, it would almost certainly be an escapee from a zoo or aviary, and not a vagrant.

I find it odd that, if it is a Pileated Woodpecker, it has gone unreported until now. Unless you are in a very isolated area, or the bird has just arrived, someone would have seen it. A Pileated Woodpecker is a hard bird to miss; they are big and loud.

A picture, no matter how poor, would be very useful. New birders are often absolutely sure of what they have seen, until you point out to them what they have actually seen.
 

txpossum

Active member
United States
I don't mean to hijack this thread but zoos are extremely important for conservation and the animals are usually well cared for.

I would love to see a photo of this supposed Pileated Woodpecker.
I know I'm not supposed to put a video here, but maybe this will help. Btw, when I was little my Dad took me over to the Junior High School roof to see a rare hawk that was sitting there. After slowly creeping up on it, we realized it was a pigeon. That became known in our family as "the great pigeon story" :rolleyes:

 

Deb Burhinus

Used to be well known! 😎
Europe
Maybe Scotland is where all the Ivory Billed Woodpeckers have been hiding all along.
I doubt whether we will see this new member again after the sarcastic comments she received.

It’s very easy for non-birders to get the impression they have seen a particular species of bird - clearly it’s extremely unlikely to have been a Pileated but rather a Great Spotted - given this occured in the breeding season it was far more likely to have been a juvenile Great Spotted Woodpecker with a fresh bright red head which has caused some confusion. There are better ways to respond to ID enquiries than some of the replies above imo.

I hope Caz comes back sometime and will know she will receive a warm welcome. Who knows, maybe develop more of an interest in wildlife and conservation as a result.
 

blues

Member
United States
Hello Delia,

Thanks for reply. No it most certainly wasn't as I have a 2 of those in my garden daily.
It was 100% a Pileated woodpecker, exactly as the pictures show online. It was almost the size of the seagulls here, bigger than my birdbox which was around 12 inches high by 8 inches wide and the wingspan when it flew off took my breath away, it was so big.

There are loads of pictures online of these and it can't be mistaken for the great spotted as it's so much bigger and the red mohican is a sight to see and very vibrant !!
I guess I'll never see one again.

I've read that they don't migrate which is why I've joined here as I can't understand why on earth it would be here. I'm now thinking it must have been an escaped pet or is someone breeding them here possibly, I have no idea but I can't think of any other explanation. The pictures online really don't show how beautiful it is in real life and it's one of those moments people have that stay with them forever :)
 

blues

Member
United States
I have seen two Pileated Woodpeckers in the past 45 years. One in my swampy backyard in Western Massachusetts and one on the edge of a golf course in Hilton Head South Carolina. That a range of about 700-800 miles.
 

Tired

Well-known member
United States
I have seen two Pileated Woodpeckers in the past 45 years. One in my swampy backyard in Western Massachusetts and one on the edge of a golf course in Hilton Head South Carolina. That a range of about 700-800 miles.
Nicely spotted, but those areas are both within where Pileated woodpeckers are known to live. The UK is not. It's very rare for birds that normally don't cross the ocean to make it across, and I would imagine it's probably somewhat unheard of with woodpeckers. They don't seem to be terribly strong fliers, or likely to be out during a storm that could push them across.
 

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