Over the weekend, I had the chance to visit an enchanted farm nestled in the foothills of the Coast Range. The proprietor spends her days outdoors under the sun, protected by a wide-brimmed hat and light cotton clothing. Besides tending to crops and livestock, my friend takes the time to notice activity at the smallest scale, and was eager to share her observations with this city slicker.
I learned about the Acorn Woodpecker, which drills holes in trees and stores its precious acorns inside, one acorn per hole. Interestingly enough, the acorns are not stored in the tree they come from, but a different type of tree with a thicker bark better suited for this purpose. The bird will use manmade wooden structures, too -- no telephone pole is immune to its head-banging determination. The storage tree (or telephone pole) is called a granary. She led us through the dry river bed to show us one.
Here is a granary tree that died and fell in the field. The acorn holes have long since been picked clean: