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Last updated on April 23, 2014 at 17:36 EDT

Red-crowned Woodpecker

The Red-crowned Woodpecker, Melanerpes rubricapillus, is a resident breeding bird from southwestern Costa Rica south to Colombia, Venezuela, the Guiana’s and Tobago. This woodpecker thrives in forests and semi-open woodland and cultivation. It nests in a hole in a dead tree or large cactus. The clutch is two eggs, incubated by both sexes, which fledge after 31-33 days.

Adults are 8 inches long and weigh 1.7 ounces. They have a zebra-barred black and white back and wings and a white rump. The tail is black with some white barring, and the undersides are pale beige-brown. The male has a red crown patch and nape. The female has a beige crown and duller nape. Young birds are duller, particularly in the red areas of the head and neck.

Red-crowned Woodpeckers feed on insects, but will take fruit and visit nectar feeders. This common and conspicuous species gives a rattling
“krrrrrl” call and both sexes drum on territory.

Red-crowned Woodpecker