Stop the Noise!
Downy woodpeckers keep pecking at my house, even though I live in the middle of 2 acres of woods. Any suggestions?
—Deborah Merrill, Sutton, Massachusetts
George: Downies and other woodpeckers will often peck on houses to broadcast their presence to mates, declare their control of territory in spring or search for roosting sites in winter. You can discourage them by putting out mylar balloons, aluminum pie pans, strips of aluminum foil or Christmas tree tinsel. Covering the areas with metal or plastic sheeting may also be effective.