apologies from your editor (Margaret Dragu) for 2 errors in the summer Tidelines
issue. I spelled Edwin’s last name incorrectly: it should be Huovinen.
Also, he is holding up a gorgeous sockeye salmon -- not a cohoe as I
erroneously printed. My apologies to Edwin and all the Tideline readers!
WOODY WOOD PECKER
There have been many sightings of many kinds of woodpeckers this autumn including the western flickers, downy woodpeckers, hairy woodpeckers, sapsuckers, and the infamous pileated woodpecker. The pileated woodpecker is enormous, noisy and a joy to have frequent Finn Slough.
With the virtual disappearance of the Ivory-billed
woodpecker, the Pileated Woodpecker has become the largest woodpecker found
locally. Approaching the crow in size, the pileated woodpecker was the model for
the famous cartoon character Woody Woodpecker – that is, in Woody’s World
War II version – (not his later cutesified ‘60’s TV image.) The
pileated woodpecker spends a lot of time on the forest floor feeding on the
fallen trees where carpenter ants are abundant and feeding in dead trees. The
woodpeckers deal with the insects infesting dead and dying trees. Not a
lot of help to the dead and dying tree you'd say. But their control of
those insects is crucial for the health of the rest of the trees and shrubs in
the area. And it is an argument for NOT tidying up natural areas.
The dead and dying plant life fosters these birds. The cyclical nature of
ecology is such that death is generative, and fosters life. Woodpeckers
demonstrate this daily. The
practice of 'cleaning up' a woodland area of dead
almost guarantees the absence of this grand species.
CAN YOU REACH US?
FINN SLOUGH HERITAGE & WETLAND SOCIETY
9480 Dyke Road
Phone: 604-878-FINN (3466)