Threats and Protection

  • Primary threat is lack of old longleaf pine trees.
  • Another threat is lack of fire. Fire removes woody plants, like oaks, leaving open pine forests.
  • Fort Liberty paints trees used by the woodpecker with two white bands or one green band. A protective 200-ft buffer marked with signs surrounds some clusters of cavity trees; human activity is limited within these sites.

Habitat and Range

  • Prefer open longleaf pine forests with trees at least 80 years old.
  • Current populations are found in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia.
  • Fort Liberty and surrounding lands are home to one of the largest populations in the world.
  • Only animal that excavates cavities in old, living pine trees. Abandoned cavities provide shelter for numerous species, i.e., wood duck, fox squirrel, American Kestrel, bats, etc...