The Pileated Woodpecker, the largest woodpecker in North America, excavates large holes into dead palm trees and other dead hardwoods in search of insects for it's next meal. Carpenter ants can make up 60% of it's diet, which are most commonly found in rotten wood of all types. If not eating insects, the Pileated also feeds on wild fruits, nuts and berries. The Pileated Woodpecker is found year-round all across Southwest Florida. They nest in new cavity each year that is excavated by both the male and the female. The female lays between 3 -5 eggs and both parents participate in the incubation of the eggs, which lasts approximately three weeks. Once hatched, the young leave the nest in four weeks but stay close to the parents for the next couple years.

The Pileated isn't a difficult one to spot or identify. Always in search of the next meal, they seldom sit still and are very busy flying from tree to tree. The well-known " Woody the Woodpecker " was modeled after the Pileated Woodpecker, if memory serves me right, he's quite a busy woodpecker also. Keep an eye to the sky for the Pileated Woodpecker!