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Let’s talk about one of the most infamous pesky birds: the woodpecker! This is not the same cartoon character Woody Woodpecker we know and love. The woodpecker is an intrusive species of birds in the Vancouver and Lower Mainland areas, and boy do they make a lot of noise!

A woodpecker’s ‘ra-ta-tat-tat’ sounds very natural and even enjoyable when you’re hiking through BC’s beautiful forests. However, it is the surest, most obvious sign if you hear it from your own living room that they’re trying to make your home their nest. Well-known for building their nests out of the hollows of trees, the woodpecker will drill away at wood using its beak to jab into the tree and make a hole of its new home. Sometimes they don’t rat-a-tat on the house to build a home either; they do so to communicate with other woodpeckers in the area. Worst of all, they can carry on that tapping for hours, leading to massive disruption in your daily life.

Interestingly wood is actually not a part of the woodpecker’s diet. Their diet instead mostly consists of insects and larvae. Their beak’s structure is naturally designed to extract their food from the trees, and their long, sticky longs assist this effort in foraging and extracting insects from beneath a tree’s bark. Other staples of their diet include tree sap, fruits, nuts, small lizards, bird eggs, spiders, ants, and termites.

What makes eradicating woodpeckers so tricky is that they are a protected bird species in Canada. So, removal must be taken care of but very delicately so. There are tons of trap ideas and devices meant to scare away woodpeckers, but some of these devices either look unsightly or they don’t work—or both. There are also over 200 varieties of woodpeckers alone in BC; a few of the most commonly seen ones we’ve helped to relocate safely include the pileated woodpecker (pictured above) and the Northern flicker, which you can learn more about here.

Woodpeckers make for fun cartoons, but in real life they’re a real pest problem! If you’ve got a woodpecker causing a lot of noise and ruckus, give your local Pest Boss a call. We can locate and then move the woodpecker safely out into the wilderness where its new home will be far less invasive to your peace and quiet. We’ll get you, varmints!