Friendly woodpecker gets a guided tour of Chicago

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What a sweet human. So kind to that bitty bird. Thanks for the morning heart warming.


My initial guess is it was hit by a car and was dazed, just grabbed onto the nearest object, which in this case was a moving object.


Woodpeckers don’t often perch, they usually cling.
Also, birds like this, elevated nesting birds, don’t leave the nest until they are almost the size of an adult.
I’d say that is likely a juvenile, and perhaps not quite used to flying yet. They still depend on their parents for food.


Something must be wrong with that bird’s amygdala.

I’d like to add he/she looks like the rain soaked them pretty good, so maybe needing to dry off before flying? Geez, they must be freezing their feathers off, the poor thing.


So many conflicting thoughts!

  • What a sweet guy;

  • What a stereotypical Chicago accent;

  • Why is he driving down STATE STREET to go to work? (I’d avoid it, especially during rush hour);

  • How did he manage to drive smoothly – and safely – while filming a bird at his left (presuming he’s right-handed)?

I really have to hope the cuts in the video mean that at least once the bird got inside and on his shoulder, he set up the new camera angle while at a stop light.


He mentions “the office”, so I could think of so many office jobs on or near State Street. Lawyer? Banker? Hotelier? Gallery manager? Real estate?

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Sure, lots of options…he’s in the Loop, for heavens sake! But I know his route, and it doesn’t make sense from a traffic point of view. The only thing I can think of is that he might live in the Printer’s Row area and work on the other side of the river, and his parking lot entrance is on State Street, so it doesn’t make sense to get off the street and then back on again over the course of only 1-2 miles.

And I’m going to be charitable and assume that if I’ve guessed correctly, he’s driving such a short distance because it’s raining or he needs his car for a meeting somewhere far away later that day!


Yeah, both my dad and stepmom work near downtown, and I really can’t see why they drive to work either. They live only a block from the Red Line.


It’s cute but wow this video is old… like last month old and it’s being uploaded as a thing now? Slow news day?

This woodpecker is recovering from a window impact. Seen this a few times at my feeders. I’m sure it recovered. If any bird can survive a knock on the head its a woodpecker. I have heard loud thumps on my bay window and found Downy and Hairy woodpeckers clinging to the rose bushes in the same manner below the window after impact.


That was my first thought too, but he seems to be moving at a decent clip. Off-hours, maybe?


Hope the bird made it wherever it was going safely!


You said it. Maybe even a little too sweet. If it were me, I’d roll up the window before the bird went berserk, flew in the car, and started pecking the hell out of me.

I think the video cut when the pecking started

What accent? :wink:

Technically, that looks like Dearborn to me. It’s a one way street and looks a bit narrower than State.

As to where he’s coming from or going, I believe he either lives in the burbs and works very near Dearborn and Washington, or vice versa. Otherwise, well, I certainly wouldn’t want to drive through that mess. The question is, why take Dearborn instead of cutting over on one of the president streets to I-90?

I don’t know why or where, all I know is people do it, and he’s doing it.

I think, left hand on wheel and turn signal*, right hand working the phone. The phone screen is big enough and the bird is close enough and steady enough where he can basically just point the camera and go.

*in Chicago, make that just the wheel


Best YouTube comment: “When did you first realize you were a Disney princess?”


Now that you mention it, Daley Plaza is definitely Dearborn, not State. But I could have sworn he drove by Goodman Theatre.


Yes, the Goodman Theater is right next to Daley Plaza, also on Dearborn.

It’s hard for me to tell what he’s looking at, because he’s pointing the camera at a low angle the whole time.


I’m an idiot!!

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Feathers are pretty waterproof. I gather that birds usually don’t fly during storms because of the air pressure on their ears.

Also, I’m constantly amazed that no matter how cold the winters here get (Chicago area, so windchill down to -40 at times) you always will see geese and ducks paddling around on open water. How does that work?