h2 Basic Description
The Red-cockaded Woodpecker is a small bird that measures around seven inches in length and weighs about one ounce. It has a black and white striped pattern on its back, with white cheeks and a black cap. However, the most distinguishing feature of this bird is its red cockade or patch found on the sides of mature males’ heads.
h2 Where To Find This Bird
Red-cockaded Woodpeckers are native to southeastern United States forests. These birds can be seen in pine forests where longleaf pines grow tall with sparse undergrowth.
This species requires old-growth pine forests of southern regions for nesting sites; they live primarily in mature pine savannas and open-canopy stands but also utilize mixed hardwood-pine forest. The red-cockaded woodpecker also prefers living near water sources such as marshes, swamps, ponds or streams.
The diet of these birds includes insects like ants, beetles, caterpillars and spiders which they mostly find by probing into bark crevices using their specialized chisel-like bills to pry open layers of tree bark foraging for prey hidden inside.
h2 Cool Facts
1) Redcockaded Woodpeckers excavate cavities in living trees.
2) They use resin from sapwood at the entrance holes to keep out predators.
3) Males engage actively in cooperative breeding by helping other pairs raise offspring through feeding nestlings.
4) They have been classified as an endangered species due to habitat loss caused by human activities such as logging and land development.
5) The scientific name (Picoides borealis), means “northern woodpecker”.