White-backed Woodpecker: X Factor Birding

Well Done

male White-backed Woodpecker (of the nominate form leucotos), Hungary, June 2012

To all those who had a go and an unusual Mystery  Bird Quiz; one lacking a photo of a bird! James Spencer was the fastest to come up with the right answers, with others coming up with the right answers or equally credible alternatives.

The Answers were:

White-backed Woodpecker and Wild Boar. It should be obvious which refers to which question.

The White-backed Woodpecker is arguable the hardest to see in Europe due to low numbers and limited range (sometimes seen as 2 separate species with ‘lilfordi‘ split by some)

The Wild Boar’s ability to churn up quite vast swathes of the forest floor amazed me.

Here you can just about see the woodpecker in characteristic habit. Never higher than 5 feet off the ground! Rummaging round the side of a fallen tree trunk.

Another characteristic sign of the presence of White-backs is stripped tree bark.

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About Martin Garner

I am a Free Spirit
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One Response to White-backed Woodpecker: X Factor Birding

  1. Steve Dudley says:

    Cracking article! I wish I had the gen that White-backed Woodpecker have a preference for feeding on or near ground level before I went hunting for them in Northern Greece last year. We eventually found them feeding on the ground hacking into rotting pine tree stumps and giving a characteristic ‘pok’ call which is very like Blackbird. So like Blackbird in fact that we thought this was the origin of the calls until we released we hadn’t seen a single Blackbird either in three hours searching the forest of hearing this call throughout! X-factor bird – definitely!

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