Any day, I can look out my office and see one of more woodpeckers in our trees. Often I see one perching on our large bird bath drinking water or taking a bath. Evelyn and I have seen as many as six woodpeckers near our house at the same time. Our woodpeckers stay in this area year around. Each creature of God has unique appearance, size, behavior, and traits. Woodpeckers, piculets, and wrynecks are a family, Picidae. Woodpeckers live throughout the world except for New Zealand and Australia, Madagascar, and the regions near the North and South Poles.
There are approximately 200 species and approximately 30 genera in this family. Woodpeckers range from about 3 and a half inches to 20 inches. Our woodpeckers appear to be approximately a foot long or so. Like most woodpeckers, our woodpeckers have red and yellow on the top of the head and under the throat, and the color of the feathers is black or olive and the underbelly is white.
Members of the family Picidae have strong bills for drilling and drumming on trees and long sticky tongues for extracting food. In order to prevent brain damage from rapid and repeated decelerations, God created woodpeckers to protect the brain. The brain is small, the orientation of the brain is within the skull (which maximises the are or contact between the brain and the skull), and uses a short duration of contact. The millisecond before contact with wood a thickened nictitans membrane closes, protecting the eye from flying debris. The nostrils are also protected; they are often slit-like and have feathers to cover them.
The feet of woodpeckers have four toes, the first and fourth facing forward, and the second and third facing backward. This is good for grasping the limbs and trunks of trees. Woodpeckers walk vertically up a tree trunk, beneficial for foraging for food or nest excavation. The tail of a woodpecker is stiff, and when this bird perches on vertical surfaces, the tail and feet work together to support it.
Our woodpeckers are social creatures. They get along very well with birds of all types.
Who would ever have imagined and created a creature like a woodpecker? Think of all the features of the woodpecker, only some of which we have mentioned in this blog. Think of the color, the shape, the adaptivity, the size, the role it has on planet earth. Our God is a mysterious and marvelous God. Let us exalt and glorify and praise and worship him for all his wonders. One of these is the woodpecker.
How long has it been since you have seen a woodpecker. Take a few moments to ponder on this creature. The woodpecker will arrest and transform your life. Tell me your experiences about woodpeckers and other birds of God.