GALLERIES > BIRDS > PICIFORMES > PICIDAE > RED-NAPED SAPSUCKER [Sphyrapicus nuchalis]
Location: Madera Canyon, AZGPS: 31.7N, -110.9W, elev=4,953' MAP
Date: November 10, 2007
ID : 6929 [3888 x 2592]
The Red-naped Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus nuchalis) is a medium-sized woodpecker.
Adults have a black head with a red forehead, white stripes and a red spot on the nape; they have a white lower belly and rump. They have a yellow breast and upper belly. They are black on the back and wings with white bars; they have a large white wing patch. Adult males have a red throat patch; for females, the lower part of the throat is red, the upper part is white.
Their breeding habitat is mixed forests in the Rocky Mountains and Great Basin areas of North America. They nest in a cavity in a dead tree. Other species which nest in tree cavities reuse nests formerly used by these birds.
These birds migrate south and vacate areas at higher elevations.
True to their name, and like other sapsuckers, they drill holes in trees and eat the sap as well as insects attracted to it. They sometimes catch insects in flight; they also eat seeds and berries.
This bird used to be considered a subspecies of the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.