Atlantic Highlands Herald: Rat-a-tat-tat at Cheesequake State Park

Pileated Woodpecker
Photo courtesy of Atlantic Highlands Herald

A wonderful surprise took place on a warm winters afternoon at Cheesequake State Park, a 1,569 acre park located in Old Bridge Township, New Jersey, found not far from the shores of Raritan Bay.  While walking along the "Green Trail" an adult Pileated Woodpecker suddenly flew near me and landed on a tree. What a thrill!

At roughly 17 inches in length, nearly the size of a crow, the Pileated Woodpecker is the tallest woodpecker in North America, except of course for the Ivory-billed Woodpecker, a huge woodpecker that once ranged over much of the southwest, but is now sadly believed to be extinct in North America due to habitat loss.

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