An endangered species is slowly working its way back from the edge of extinction in the woods of Central Texas

Four families of red cockaded woodpeckers have laid successful broods in the W.D. Jones State Forest in Conroe, Texas. The chicks are a sign of success for the endangered species and are being fed and cared for by all adult members of the breeding community.

The species make their home in the live cavity of adult pine trees. When the chicks are 26-days-old, they will fledge from the nest and find their own nearby pine tree cavity to nest in.

The red cockaded woodpeckers have been on the endangered list since 1970 and the main reason for their listing is habitat loss. They are native to the Pineywoods region of East Texas.

According to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, an estimated 925 red-cockaded woodpeckers lived in Texas in 1994. Due to the success of carefully monitored breeding populations like the one in Conroe, the woodpecker may be taken off the endangered list in the near future.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service conducted a 5-year review of the woodpecker species' management and proposed downlisting the birds from endangered to threatened. However, the TXPWD says the final decision regarding the status has not been publicly decided yet.

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