Next time you see a dead tree and think "that could kill someone, better get it shifted", please think again.
I'm a lesser spotted woodpecker and we need dead trees like you need suburban semis and loft apartments. They're where we live.
But don't just listen to me. Here's what my good friend Paul Stancliffe of the British Trust for Ornithology has to say on the matter. "Dead trees are being tidied up much more, especially in parks. If there is a danger of trees falling across paths they are being removed. Lesser spotted woodpeckers are not very good at moving into new areas when they suffer loss of habitat." Couldn't have put it better myself.
The great spotted woodpeckers are different (what kind of egomaniac calls himself 'great' by the way?). They can basically power their way through anything, but we only have the pecking power to make nests in decaying wood.
You're ahead of me aren't you? Over-zealous tidying away of dead trees is driving my lot into extinction. Our numbers have halved since 2009, and extinction isn't a nice word. And there's no need for it. You humans have a 1 in 16,800 chance of dying in a road accident; the risk of being killed by a tree is 1 in 10 million. When it comes to trees, I'm even more of a risk-assessment expert that the guys from Phoenix!
I'm not going to say this dead tree massacre is health and safety gone mad, but you get my drift.