Red-bellied Woodpecker

Posted on in Recent Sightings by Hawk Mountain

Red-bellied Woodpecker with red belly feathers visible

Red-bellied Woodpeckers (Melanerpes carolinus) have been sighted recently at Hawk Mountain. These birds have a distinct black-and-white patterned back with a bright red cap. While males have a red cap from crown to nape, females only have a red nape. They also have a red on their bellies, although this can be difficult to see.

They are more common in the southern United States, but are gradually expanding further north. Red-bellied Woodpeckers have a uniquely long tongue that allows them to pull out insects from trees. Their tongues can extend as far as two inches past its beak. 





Photo by Bill Moses