Green Woodpeckers

I have woodpeckers in my garden.  Green ones.  They are very timid. I often try to get a bit nearer to take a photo, but they always sense I’m there. If I tip-toe across my patio without a camera in my hand, they hardly take any notice of me. If I tip-toe across my patio with a camera in my hand they fly off and chatter loudly (or are they laughing at me?). They are, in any case, extremely camera-shy.

Except for this one:

This is Woody, and was a gift from my parents when they came over from the UK in the summer. He’s cute, he’s not camera shy, and he doesn’t make big holes in our lawn while looking for ants with his beak!

For a real one see here: Yaffle

Whenever I think of woodpeckers I remember Professor Yaffle from Bagpuss. He was the rather pompous bookend carved in the form of a woodpecker! Here he is with Bagpuss, courtesy of

My Woody may not be as intelligent as Professor Yaffle, but he is definitely cuter! Don’t you think?!

P.S. Yaffle actually means the laughing noise the green woodpeckers  make, and from what I’ve seen they only make this noise when flying off. Green woodpeckers have an extremely long and sticky tongue (10cm) for extracting insects from the holes that they have made in my lawn. Like ant-eaters? Okay, not as long as an anteater’s! Here, I found a picture: