Stop, look, listen
Just because we're out of lockdown shouldn't mean we get out less. The breeding season is at its height so there's many to look out for but one that's often heard is the woodpecker. It's usually the Greater Spotted, also known as the Pied Woodpecker, that we hear drumming away - as in this photo (left) by Andrew Carter. But there's more than one.
There's also it's little friend often called unsurprisingly the Lesser-spotted Woodpecker but 'spotted' isn't a helpful differentiation and it's other name, the Barred Woodpecker is more helpful.
Apart from the 'pied' vs 'barred' description, another differential is that the smaller bird drums for two seconds while its larger cousin only does so for just one, speeding up at the end. So take a stop-watch with you, too, and start looking if you hear the longer burst, as the lesser is quite rare. (I know, it's the wrong way round - perhaps remind yourself 'longer is lesser'.)
Maybe they'd both been having a go at this rotting old tree trunk alongside the path near Compton Chamberlayne.
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Photo: Avocets (Izzy Fry)
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