The Carpenter Bird

In Mexico, there is a woodpecker known as el carpentero. The reason for the name is the odd method this woodpecker has of storing its food. Yuccas have stalks which are separated into several cavities. This bird bores two holes in the yucca--one in the top of a chamber and another at the bottom. The hole drilled is just big enough to fit the nut through, not big enough for any bird or squirrel to get into. The woodpecker packs the chambers with acorns and other nuts. When it has a need for this stored food, it is dry and protected.

Many places where the yucca plants are located do not have oak trees. One study showed the woodpeckers flying 30 miles one way to get their acorns, but the nuts are safe in the isolation of the yucca. Baby carpenter birds have been seen carrying on this behavior and doing it too soon to have learned it. Apparently it is a instinctive behavior genetically programmed into the birds.

Programming demands a programmer--an intelligence that can design a system that works. We suggest that this is a design feature of the Creator who says we can know He is through the things He has made.

Data taken from Dick E. Bird News, May/June, 1997, page 3

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