The Northern Flicker The Northern Flicker

One of the more common woodpeckers and a lovely bird he is! Even more beautiful is the Piliated Woodpecker, I will try to get a picture of one of those soon (he has been working on one of the utility polls on our street).

Pests can be beautiful, the woodpecker is a good example. I have seen many homes with siding and trim damage caused by woodpeckers. It appears that the woodpeckers mistake the hum of the electrical wiring for the sound of bugs. The fine fellow in the picture above was making an awful racket when I spotted him (or her). He was pecking at the top of the aluminium street light cover in the mistaken belief that the sounds heard were coming from some tasty bugs.

One of his Piliated friends has been doing the same thing with the top of the utility pole on our street, he is a bit luckier. The pole is made out of wood. But in either case, the number of bugs to be found are few.

So, how do you go about stopping such activity? Here are a few tips:

  • Temporarely cover the area of damage with aluminum foil or sheat-metal.
  • String up some balloons with big eyes painted on them (available in many pest control supply houses).
  • String some fishing lines across the flight path and hang some ribbons from the lines.

Colorado State University has some additional tips.

If you have found some other successful control methods, please let me know: george@soundhome.com.

p.s. Woody does not seem to be such a bright guy after all.