The pileated is a wary bird, and is not easily stalked. On one occasion, when I had successfully approached a male that was idling in the top of a gaunt chestnut near the nesting tree, I paused, before shifting from an uncomfortable position, until the woodpecker should sidle around the limb. Even so, he was quicker than I, for before I had completed my movement, he was peering from the opposite side of the tree, and, detecting me, was off. Again I came upon a pileated woodpecker, a male, suddenly, in open forest. He did not immediately take wing, but, hitching downward upon the tree trunk, he reached the ground, hopped off, and then flitted away through the undergrowth, so that I scarcely saw him go.
Arthur Cleveland Bent