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North American Animals - mamals, birds, reptiles, insects

 Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)




Northern Flicker | Colaptes auratus photo
Northern Flicker (Male), Cabin Lake Viewing Blinds, Deschutes National Forest, Near Fort Rock, Oregon

Photograph by Alan And Elaine Wilson. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

Northern Flicker | Colaptes auratus photo
Northern Flicker (female)

Photograph by Alan And Elaine Wilson. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

NORTHERN FLICKER FACTS

Description
The Northern Flicker is a medium to large woodpecker. The back is gray brown with dark bars. The underside is off white with small black spots. It has a black crescent on the chest. The rump is white. The wings have yellow or red patches which are noticeable in flight. The tail is black above. The eyes are black and feet are gray. There are two color forms. The Yellow-shafted form from eastern and northern parts of the range has yellow central shaft and underside of wing and tail feathers, tan face and throat, gray crown, red crescent on back of neck, black stripe on face of male. The Red-shafted form from western parts of the range has bright red central shaft and undersides of wing and tail feathers, gray face and throat, black crown, red stripe on face of male, brown stripe on face of female.. Juvenile are similar to adults but duller.

Size
length 28cm - 31cm. Wingspan 42cm - 51cm

Environment
open woodland, forest fringes, cities and suburbs.

Food
Insects, mainly ants. Also eats fruit, seeds.

Breeding
The nest is an unlined cavity in a tree hole (usually in a dead tree). Lays a clutch of three to twelve white eggs.

Range
The Northern Flicker breeds across North America, from Alaska and northern Canada, throughout the United States and Mexico, and southward to Central America. Winters from Southern Canada to South America,

Classification
Class:Aves
Order:Piciformes
Family:Picidae
Genus:Colaptes
Species:auratus
Common Name:Northern Flicker