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March 22, 2019

This Is What Happens When A Woodpecker Decorates Your House

The woodpeckers, piculets, wrynecks, and sapsuckers are a family, Picidae, of near-passerine birds. Members of this family can be found worldwide, except for Australia, New Guinea, New Zealand, Madagascar, and the extreme Polar Regions.

Most species live in forests or woodland ecosystems, although a few species are known to live in treeless areas, such as rocky hillsides and deserts.

The Picidae are just one of the eight living families in the order Piciformes. Members of the order Piciformes, such as the jacamars, puffbirds, barbets, toucans, and honeyguides, have traditionally been thought to be very closely related to the woodpeckers, piculets, wrynecks, and sapsuckers. More recently, DNA sequence analyses have confirmed this view.

There are about 200 species and about 30 genera in this family. Many species are threatened or endangered due to loss of habitat or habitat fragmentation. Two species of woodpeckers, the Ivory-billed Woodpeckerand the Imperial Woodpecker, have been considered extinct for about 30 years.

The woodpeckers range from highly antisocial solitary species that are aggressive toward other members of their species, to species that live in groups. Group-living species tend to be communal group breeders. In addition to these species, a number of species may join mixed-species feeding flocks with other insectivorous birds, although they tend to stay at the edges of these groups.

Joining these flocks allows woodpeckers to decrease anti-predator vigilance and increase their feeding rate. Woodpeckers are diurnal, roosting at night inside holes. In most species the roost will become the nest during the breeding season.

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