A mother’s love knows no limit. There have been hundreds of cases of human moms that have lifted cars and squared off with bears to save their kids from danger. But this clip’s super mom isn’t a human at all.
She’s a bird, a woodpecker to be precise.
However, it doesn’t seem to matter whether you have hands or wings when there are children to be saved. In this harrowing footage, we’re able to see one of the bravest moms in the animal kingdom in action. She’s pecking tirelessly into her den which has been invaded by a hungry egg-eating Yellow-Bellied Puffing snake. The footage was taken in the Peru Amazon basin during a flood.
The humans holding the camera are shocked by the snake’s sudden appearance. Luckily mom escaped its jaws in the nick of time. However, the snake is still in her den…
She dodges strike after strike until it finally grabs her. Things look bleak, but the snake has made a critical mistake. Snakes can’t really kill their prey unless they’re able to smother them…and snakes can’t exactly smother things in mid air. Mom breaks free, and the snake gets nothing but a mouth full of feathers for its efforts. It seems to be a stalemate.
Mom knows that she can’t take the snake in a straight fight. But she doesn’t have to win. She just has to annoy the snake long enough for it to give up. Plus, a lucky beak strike to the eyes or a soft spot on its body could spell defeat for her slithering home invader.
The video doesn’t show the end of the fight. Fortunately, the cameraman finished the story:
I was vacating in Peru Amazon Basin and everything was flooded. We went for daily field exploration by boat.
On one occasion we heard knocking and saw a woodpecker knocking at a tree. When we came closer we saw that there was a hole in the tree. So I moved my simple camera to film the knocking and after a few minutes the snake came out.
At first, there was a lady woodpecker who knocked on the tree and fought the snake. My guide explained that it seems the snake invaded their nest and potentially there are eggs there.
When I asked why the woodpecker is trying to fight and what its chances are, the answer was not much, but the maternal instinct was very strong.
After this fight, we saw that the woodpecker was hurt. The guide said that it is basically doomed as the smell of blood in the Amazon brings other killers. After the fight, the male woodpecker came down.
It seems like the woodpecker succeeded in warding off the snake, but sadly she succumbed to her injuries. The cameraman goes on to say that there was a male woodpecker nearby. So it’s likely that he took up the job as a solo parent.