Congratulations to Kyle Tansley for winning the August 2018 Vermont Atlas of Life iNaturalist photo-observation of the month. The images of a Pileated Woodpecker feeding recently fledged young was the most popular photo-observation.
Assuming the Ivory-billed Woodpecker to be extinct, the Pileated is North America’s largest woodpecker. The Pileated has increased in numbers markedly in the last 50 years according to the Breeding Bird Survey and the Vermont Breeding Bird Atlas. Following the extensive logging of the eastern forests in the 1800s, this bird became quite scarce. The Pileated Woodpecker can most easily be located by the loud calls and drumming that it gives frequently during the spring and early summer. It is a surprisingly silent bird at other times of the year. The hammering it makes when feeding is louder and carries farther than that of other woodpeckers. The presence of Pileated Woodpeckers in an area is often revealed by their distinctive rectangular feeding holes with a pile of fresh chips usually found below. Check out the live map of sightings at Vermont eBird and submit yours too.
Visit iNaturalist Vermont, and you can vote for the winner this month by clicking ‘fav’ on your favorite photo-observation. Make sure you get outdoors and record the biodiversity around you, then submit your discoveries and you could be a winner!