Dots Dots Dots
Ever notice lines in the tree bark? Lines of little dots, little holes, made in thoughtfully placed rows?
These rows of dots, look to me like someone is trying to tell me something. Or that someone has a brand new drill and has to try it out, decorate something with this new tool, new toy. Haven’t we all had some new something that we just couldn’t put down?
Who in the world would be doing something like this? I see these holes often in the woods up here in the mountains, but I’ve also seen these holes in trees on the rolling hills of James Madison’s Montpelier, and so many other places as well.
The Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
These holes are called “sap wells” of the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Sphyrapicus varius. A medium sized woodpecker with a brilliant patterned face of black, red and buff white; a black and white striped back; and red forehead. The male also has a red throat. The white of his striped back is an off white which looks a bit dingy to me.
The Sap Wells
The Yellow-bellied Sapsucker drills these sapwells and laps up the sap and insects that are attracted to it. They complete their diet by also eating fruits and berries. And they provide me more patterns to be attracted to.