In instances where they breed and live in non-residential areas, they can be shy. This reclusive bird lives in mature forests and is uncommon to fairly common, found statewide, except the Bluegrass Region, where it is considered rare. Acorns and other nuts are a favorite food. Their preferred food is boring beetles, grasshoppers, ants and other insects, but they also consume nuts and wild fruits. Hello!?!?!? That makes them great photography subjects. Leave a Reply Cancel reply. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Email (required) (Address never made public) ... KY Birds; Customize; Follow Following; Sign up; Log in; It would have been nice if the article was about that, though I did rather enjoy the article. Red-headed woodpeckers rank as the most wide spread of the Melanerpes species, with a presence in almost every state from the Rocky Mountains and destinations east. DOWNY WOODPECKER One of Kentucky’s most abundant woodpeckers 6. Woodpecker reproduction, and ultimately their abundance, has been severely impacted by the non-native European Starling, a noxious bird that competes for nest sites, often taking over holes in trees made by woodpeckers. Jackson (1996) identified the only recorded weight as 453g. These woodpeckers are easily identified by size, but birders should not… Insects that hide from birds underneath tree bark or deep in the wood are tasty morsels for the woodpecker. Woodpecker popularity partially comes about because they enjoy living in and around residential areas. The Downy Woodpecker is often confused with the larger Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus), which has a longer bill and unspotted white back. NORTHERN FLICKER The only woodpecker to regularly feed on the ground 7. The female’s head is buffy and the nape is red. West Indian Woodpecker . Popular birds, they are welcome at many back yard feeders and especially enjoy a snack of suet and water. The woodpecker’s plumage is generally not brightly colored, but they often have distinctive markings and patches of red around their heads. The genus Campephilus is essentially a tropical one, embracing 13 species, including the imperial woodpecker. Unfortunately the traditional eighth of the Kentucky woodpeckers, the Red-cockaded Woodpecker disappeared from the state over fifteen years ago. Their long tongues with barbed tips are used to probe crevices in tree bark to find insects and larvae. The wings and tail are bluish-black, the breast is white, and there are white patches on their wings. A year-round resident, the Red-Bellied Woodpecker, readily comes to feeders in the winter. • The Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus) is Kentucky’s largest woodpecker. The birds button on the left leads to additional identification info. The red crested head and white stripes across the face makes it difficult to mistake the Pileated Woodpecker for any other species. It’s very easy to identify in its East Coast territories. The picture provides a good comparison of the Downy and Hairy and highlights the fact they Hairy Woodpeckers have a larger bill. They belong to the same genus as the Acorn Woodpecker, and like them, they are known to store food in cracks in trees. This member of the Picidae family is easy to recognize because of its size and its bold markings, but many birders are surprised at the other pileated woodpecker facts they uncover when they learn more about these incredible birds. • The Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), the smallest woodpecker in the eastern U.S., is sparrow-sized, and the most numerous and widespread woodpecker in Kentucky. The linings of the wings are white. In winter, transients from more northern breeding areas, pass through Kentucky and may overwinter here, boosting local populations. Six species — the Red-Headed Woodpecker, Red-Bellied Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Northern Flicker and Pileated Woodpecker — nest in Kentucky. Look (and listen) for Pileated Woodpeckers whacking at dead trees and fallen logs in search of their main prey, carpenter ants, leaving unique rectangular holes in the wood. In the northernmost area of their range they are a summer resident for breeding and then migrate south for the winter. • The Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus) is a 12-inch woodpecker found in uniform abundance across the state. Their diet also consists of in season fruit, nuts and insects. In winter, several species of woodpeckers often frequent backyard bird feeders, where they can be observed up close and photographed. The shrill, high-pitched notes “shock” a tom into gobbling, so the hunter can determine the exact location of the bird, to set up for the hunt. Crow. 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