July 14, 20226 min read, 1145 words
Published: July 14, 2022 | 6 min read, 1145 words
In my third year of reporting on the coronavirus pandemic, I find woodpeckers, which can ram their heads against hard surfaces about 20 times a second, to be incredibly relatable. But the birds’ extraordinary behavior raises an obvious question: Why, as one team of scientists wro...
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This article does a great job asking and uncovering the nuances and previous misconceptions around the question of how woodpeckers can sustain their pecking without suffering traumatic brain injury. My frustration with this piece is that is spends 95% of the article posing the question in various ways, and then only a few quick sentences without further explanation or elaboration to answer it. All we're left with is "they have smaller brains" and no further scientific breakdown as to why that minimizes any possible brain damage. I'm left a bit disappointed from the otherwise fantastic journalist Ed Yong.