WHITE-HEADED WOODPECKER


Picoides albolarvatus


Description:

The White-Headed Woodpecker primarily feeds on seeds and insects; with seeds dominating its winter diet. Rather than pecking at the tree while foraging, this bird will flake and chip bark off a tree to reach insects hidden underneath. This silent foraging behavior along with its dark plumage makes this bird relatively difficult to find.


Appearance:

General: 9 to 9.25 inches in length.

Male: Black body, wings and tail. White head (face, crown and throat). Red spot on nape. White wing patches that appear as thin bars when the wings are folded. Wing patches form a white crescent when in flight.

Female: Similar to male, except lacks red nape spot.


Habitat:

Pine forests


Nesting:

3-9 eggs. The eggs have a 14 day incubation period. Fledging occurs in 26 days. The nest is a tree cavity excavated relatively close to the ground (7 to 30 feet). The nest cavity is typically formed in a dead tree or snag.


Observed Locations:

  • Paso Picaco Campground, Cuyamaca State Park, CA





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