Saturday, January 26, 2008

Peanut butter w/ Red-bellied Woodpecker, Melanerpes carolinus

Peanut butter slathered on the trunk of the Pin Oak, Abraham gave me the idea and it works. How neat it is that?
The Red-bellied Woodpecker, Melanerpes carolinus, is a medium-sized woodpecker of the Picidae family. Adults are mainly light grey on the face and underparts; they have black and white barred patterns on their back, wings and tail. Adult males have a red cap going from the bill to the nape; females have a red patch on the nape and another above the bill. The reddish tinge on the belly that gives the bird its name is difficult to see in field identification. They are 9 to 10.5 inches long, and have a wingspan of 15 to 18 inches. These birds search out insects on tree trunks. They may also catch insects in flight. They are omnivores, eating insects, fruits, nuts and seeds.
SOUND they make
Cool Facts:
The Red-bellied Woodpecker competes vigorously for nest holes with other woodpeckers, in one case even dragging a Red-cockaded Woodpecker from a nest cavity and killing it. But it is often evicted from nest holes by the European Starling. In some areas, half of all Red-bellied Woodpecker nesting cavities are taken over by starlings.
Stores food in cracks and crevices of trees and fence posts. The woodpecker does not appear to defend its caches from other birds or mammals. The male Red-bellied Woodpecker has a longer bill and a longer, wider tongue tip than the female. These adaptations may allow the male to reach deeper into furrows to extract prey and may allow the sexes to divide up the resources in one area.


imac said...

very cool shots, great work.

oldmanlincoln said...

I love the red-bellied woodpeckers. I have them all year and the females are really neat. Their red head is mostly gray. I have some on my flickr blog and also on my birds blog.

Glad the peanut butter works. It does here. The squirrels lick most of it off and the downy woodpeckers come in and get the rest when it is frozen.

Alyssa said...

Wonderful pictures and interesting info on one of my favorite birds. Putting the peanut butter on the trunk is an excellent idea!

Kerri said...

Great shots! He is a Beauty!

Old Wom Tigley said...

I missed this yesterday D... this is another beautiful bird I wish we had here.