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Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

Posted by linnea56 (My Page) on
Mon, Oct 22, 12 at 14:57

I don't know where to post this question!

The house has aluminum siding, but painted cedar trim. It's 26 years old, the trim has never deteriorated, so has never been replaced. Painted about 4 years ago: the paint is still in good shape, except where this bird is attacking it!

What does this mean? Does it mean we have bugs in or under that wood? Thanks.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

Pecking is not always foraging behavior. It is also a territorial display. Lots of information is available:

http://www.birds.cornell.edu/wp_about/control.html
http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/natres/06516.html


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

I agree, sounds like he is drumming.

Hang some scare tape near the drumming spot - it will usually annoy them enough so that they go elsewhere.


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

We had one jack-hammering on the next door neighbor's chimney cap (metal) for a few weeks. Sounded like a metal shop.


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

I have a house that has Hardiboard (concrete composite) vertical siding, with vertical cedar batting every foot. I do not have insects in the cedar strips, but I did have a woodpecker that liked to fly under the eaves, hold onto the tops of the battens, and proceed to destroy them. I tried everything from yelling, to throwing a handful of gravel, to hanging a plastic owl nearby. Nothing worked. Finally I got up on a ladder with a stapler and that black mesh bird netting and stapled it on to the top portion of the battens and the underside of the roof, which blocked the area the woodpecker liked to hang out. That was three years ago, and the bird hasn't returned...except to drum on my steel chimney cap at 7am, but I can deal with that.


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

I got a good look at the bird. We were on each side of the window from each other. It looks like she is a female red bellied woodpecker. She had a strip of red on her head, but not enough to be a male. The damage is worse than I thought. The holes are half an inch to almost an inch wide. Most of it is limited to an area less than 2 feet square. Maybe we have some rot there, that we didn't notice under the paint.

Do such birds do territorial displays in the fall? And do females do it too? Thanks.


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

This happened to me, too, except that it was the galvanized steel flue pipe. I asked a bird professor (ornithologist) what it was all about, and he said it was a male trying to attract females. Who knew? But my episode was in the Spring. Anyway, I tried it myself, but no luck. Wife thought I was nuts.


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

If it has red on the head and is a red bellied, it is a male.

. Adult female: red on the head is limited to nasal tufts (just above the bill)


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

Buy one of the kid water guns make a weak solution of ammonia and water, use just enough ammonia so the mix has a slight smell. Next time the bird attack house take a squirt at him, you probably won,t hit him but if you even get close he won,t come back. I had a bunch of swallows nesting under my deck they would actually attack anyone coming in area. I tore out the nest and they rebuilt. A friend suggested the ammonia thing, bought a kids water gun tried it after second time the birds left and have not been back.


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

iggie-
That sounds like an idea worth trying.


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

Your best bet with any bird problem is to limit access if you can.

Keep in mind that harassing some protected species of birds could land you in legal trouble if someone that does not like what you are doing observes the offense.

Some more suggestions:

http://extension.entm.purdue.edu/publications/ADM-5.pdf,


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

Since I retired I have taken up photography as a hobby and one of my prime interests is bird photography.

In turn, I have joined a birdwatching club sponsored by the University of Massachusetts and through the club I have met a number of PHD level ornithologists.

I had noticed a woodpecker that consistently was pecking on an aluminum light pole and I knew it could not be in the pursuit of bugs under the bark...LOL

So I asked the experts and was I surprised at what I learned.

During the mating season the young males demonstrate their prowese to the females by making the most noise when pecking and as is common with men everywhere...some of the male woodpeckers cheat, they have realized they make more noise and get more attention by pecking on aluminum light poles or aluminum siding than the can by pecking on a tree limb so while your trying to run the poor little guy off, keep in mind, your messing up his love life....LOL


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RE: Woodpecker pecking on the house?!

Sex or food.

Sounds more like sex on aluminum.

He likely thinks it makes him VERY loud.


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