Monday, 19 November 2007
It is often said, and written, that woodpeckers are poor, weak fliers. This is not really true. If need be, woodpeckers can travel quite long distances and are not afraid to cross exapanses of open ground or even large bodies of water, such as lakes and even the sea. Some species, such as White-backed and Great Spotted, can disperse for hundeds of kms in hard winters, in search of food resources. The so-called "typical" woodpecker flight of a series of fast wing beats followed by a bound, creating an undulating flight pattern, is not true for all species. Green Woodpecker perhaps illustrates this flight pattern best, the Dendrocopos woodpeckers bound, to varying degrees, in flight, but Wrynecks and Black Woodpecker, for example, do not fly like this. The two photos here show a Black Woodpecker in the Danube Delata, Romania, by Daniel Petrescu.