Woodpecker Takes On 10Ft Snake In Heroic Struggle For Nest

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The crimson crested woodpecker made repeated attempts to drive the snake out of the tree and was bitten by the snake five times.On each occasion the snake, thought to be an olive whipsnake, held the much smaller bird in its mouth and then let it fall to the ground below. After a fight lasting about four minutes, the wounded bird left the area and is likely to have died of its injuries or been killed by a predator.

Assaf Admoni, 38, an engineer from Herzelia in Israel, took the pictures while holidaying on the Yarapa River in Peru in June.“We think it [the snake] was looking for eggs or chicks and the woodpecker arrived to find it had moved in while she was away,” he said.“It really looked like the female was acting frantically out of maternal instinct. She just kept racing up the tree and attacking the snake on its side.

“The snake wasn’t very happy about that. It kept lunging at her and it landed its strike every time.”He said he had been impressed by the bird’s persistence.“What amazed me most was that she completely seemed to sacrifice herself for the chicks we think were inside,” Mr Admoni said.“It seemed like she would do anything to try and get this thing out of her nest.”But he added: “The woodpecker eventually left. She looked very hurt. Our guides told us she was doomed because smelling of blood would make her an easy target other predators. We don’t know what happened to her in the end.”

(source)

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