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Red-cockaded Woodpecker - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by Ken Harvey
W G Jones State Forest, Conroe, Texas, 8 June 2019
Dryobates borealis


22 cm (8¾ in)

  • Black and white horizontal barring on the back
  • Black cap and nape
  • White cheek patches
  • Red streak on each side of the black cap


Southeastern United States, from eastern Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana east to North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida.


Placed in genus Leuconotopicus by Gill and Donsker. Formerly included in Picoides

This is a monotypic species[1].


They nest in small colonies in mature pine and pine/oak forests.



Their diet consists of insects, larva and arthropods, particularly ants, beetles, cockroaches, caterpillars, wood-boring insects, and spiders. They also occasionally eat fruit and berries.


Their clutch contains 3-4 small white eggs; the pair are often assisted by helpers. Incubation lasts 10-12 days, with fledging occurring after about 26 days. Only occasionally will a second brood be raised.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. ScienceDaily
  3. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved June 2019)

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