April 2014

The DNR communications team works with agency experts to develop the weekly questions and provide the answers. This feature addresses current DNR issues, interesting topics, or the most frequently asked questions from around Minnesota.

4/21/14

Q: The same woodpecker pecks at our house non-stop. Doesn’t he get a headache after awhile?

A: Woodpeckers have well-adapted structures that act as shock absorbers inside of their heads. They have a hard, but elastic beak, a springy tongue-supporting structure called the hyoid and an area of spongy bone inside the skull. These features, in addition to cerebral fluid, interact to suppress vibration in their head so they can peck all day without getting a headache.

-Lori Naumann, information officer, DNR nongame wildlife program

4/17/14

Q: Last night I heard and saw what I believe was a flock of cranes. It was a dark night, with bright stars shining, but only a little moonlight. Is it common for cranes to migrate at night?

A: Sandhill cranes normally migrate during the day, but in some circumstances they have been observed migrating after dark, especially if there is a bright starlit or moonlit night sky.

A Florida field naturalist reported migratory sandhill cranes flying overhead at 10:30 p.m. and another two flocks flying overhead at 3 a.m. on the same night near Gainesville, Fla. on Nov. 25-26, 1984.

Sandhill cranes from eastern Minnesota winter in Florida and would be migrating to Florida in November.

-Carrol Henderson, nongame wildlife program supervisor

 

DNR Question of the Week Archive