Red Cockaded Woodpecker
Red Cockaded Woodpecker
Photo credit: Marine L. Cpl Hacker
Red Cockaded sounds: FMNH-UF/Hardy

 

The Endangered Birds of Florida

 

 

The Red Cockaded Woodpecker
Picoides borealis

 

To begin: what is a Bird?

A Bird is a warm blooded, bipedal (two legs)

vertebrate (has a backbone) with feathers,

bills and wings and most can fly.

It lays eggs to reproduce and many theories have

it classified as a direct descendant of Dinosaurs,

dating back to the Jurassic period.


The Red Cockaded Woodpecker, so named for

the tiny spot of red on the heads of the males,

is about the size of a Cardinal.

Red Cockaded Woodpecker
A Red Cockaded Woodpecker
Photo credit:
Resourceful Communities

 

It once called nearly the entire Southeast old growth

Pine Forests home, but with the near total demise

of its habitat being diminished by 97%,

the Red Cockaded must now call what remains

of the younger Longleaf Pine Forests home.

It has been on the Federal Endangered

Species List since 1970.

 

Unlike other Woodpeckers, the Red Cockaded

makes its nest in living Longleaf Pine Trees.

Red Cockaded Woodpecker at the Nest
A Red Cockaded Woodpecker at the Nest
Photo credit: U.S. FWS/Eric Spadgenske

 

The Woodpeckers preference for Pine Trees

with Red Heart Fungus are the primary

reason for its predicament.

A Pine Tree must age to acquire this disease,

which makes nest building much easier, but the

number of existing Longleaf Pines that have

both age and the disease are few.

Male and Female Red Cockaded Woodpeckers

Male and Female Red Cockaded Woodpeckers
Photo credit: U.S. FWS/Eric Spadgenske

 

These Woodpeckers live in groups of a nesting pair,

their current offspring and a few past ones as well.

We have them in the Ocala National Forest

because of the many Longleaf Pines here.

 

This Woodpecker is omnivorous, an opportunist

who will eat most anything, but prefers insects

and a variety of seeds, fruit and nuts.

 


Places to learn more:

 

Animal Diversity Web

Picoides Borealis

 

Birdlife.Org

Red Cockaded Woodpecker

 

Cornell

Red Cockaded Woodpecker

 

EDF

Red Cockaded Woodpecker

 

EPA

Safe Harbor Program for Red Cockaded Woodpecker

 

FWS

Red Cockaded Woodpecker

 

FFWCC

Species Spotlight - Red Cockaded

 

Nature Conservancy

Red Cockaded Woodpecker

 

Palmetto-Pear Preserve

Birding

 

University of Florida

Red Cockaded Woodpecker

 

USFWS/Alabama

Red Cockaded Woodpecker

RCW Alabama Safe Harbor

 


 

Walking with the Alligators

Write to Gator Woman

gatorwoman3 at centurylink.net

 

 

Keep Florida Wildlife Wild and Alive~

 

Web Design by: Gator-Woman

Educating Visitors About Florida's Wildlife Since July 30, 2008

Last edited October 7, 2017

Links, questions and feedback are always appreciated.
Walking With The Alligators.com does not share or sell any visitor information.
2008 - 2017  Walking With The Alligators.com  All Rights Reserved.