Skip to Main Content
Red-cockaded woodpeckers vs rat snakes: the effectiveness of the resin barrierAuthor(s): D. Craig Rudolph; Howard Kyle; Richard N. Conner
Source: Wilson Bulletin. 102(1): 14-22
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
PDF: Download Publication (226 KB)
DescriptionRed-cockaded Woodpeckers (Picoides borealis) excavate resin wells in the immediate vicinity of roost and nest cavity entrances. Resin wells are worked regularly, resulting in a copious and persistent resin flow that coats the tree trunk, especially below cavity entrances. Red-cockaded Woodpeckers also scale loose bark from cavity trees and closely adjacent trees. These two behaviors result in smooth, sticky surfaces surrounding cavity entrances. Climbing experiments on cavity, scaled, and control trees using rat snakes (Elaphe obsoleta) demonstrate that these behaviors produce a resinous barrier that is highly effective in preventing predatory snakes from gaining access to active Red-cockaded Woodpecker cavities.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationRudolph, D. Craig; Kyle, Howard; Conner, Richard N. 1990. Red-cockaded woodpeckers vs rat snakes: the effectiveness of the resin barrier. Wilson Bulletin. 102(1): 14-22.
- The red-cockaded woodpecker cavity tree: A very special pine
- A bark-shaving technique to deter rat snakes from climbing red-cockaded woodpecker cavity trees
- Yellow-bellied sapsuckers feeding at red-cockaded woodpecker resin wells
XML: View XML