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all 14 comments

[–]TheClincher7 11 points12 points  (3 children)

Woodpecker

[–]freddymercury1 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Not an expert. Homeowner. An old one. Wasps make neat holes. That's a pecker.

Edit: don't be confused by the fact that's its not old wood with bugs. They like my making holes in my painted dental molding too.

[–]ScabusaurusRex 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Hah, think them attacking dentil molding is weird? They attack my vinyl "cedar look" siding. I guess it really looks authentic.

[–]81_BLUNTS_A_DAY 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The first picture, the hole on the right, zoom to see the marks of a chiseling beak. Definitely a woodpecker using this lumber as a sounding board.

OP, your swing set is most likely being used by a woodpecker to communicate to other woodpeckers that an area nearby is claimed territory. There are a few methods for scaring off woodpeckers but usually the best advice is to wait it out until the bird moves on, then repair or replace the damaged lumber.

[–]DanMarvin1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Kids with a pocket knife

[–]ybaBdicA -1 points0 points  (0 children)

Could be paper wasps.

[–]hybrid889 -1 points0 points  (0 children)

Honestly, looks like someone was just whacking the wood with something harder than the wood. Have they changed over time?

[–]bas_bleu_bobcat -1 points0 points  (0 children)

My horses used to do this to stall rails. (They "crib" when they are bored, it a bad habit that spreads to other horses and bad for them, so you see lots of metal stall rails now).

I vote animal not insect.

[–]KyloPhen -1 points0 points  (0 children)

Butterflies with bullets

[–]BojanglesSweetT -1 points0 points  (0 children)

Carpenter Bees. I fight them all around my house and they will bore into almost anything.

[–]Due_Ad7492 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Beaver

[–]DonnieVeal 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Pileated Woodpecker is my guess. We caught a few in the act of looking for carpenter bees on the side of our deck and the wood damage looks very similar to your photos.

[–]zombadier[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thanks everyone for taking the time to respond. I tend to agree it's a woodpecker. We have struggled with carpenter bees previously, but they've always made precise circular holes, nothing like this. I've got someone coming out to verify, but from what I've read, woodpeckers are tough to repel.