Woodpeckers and Other Clingers

Primary Reference Resources:

"Audubon Field Guide to the Mid-Atlantic States" by Peter Alden and Brian Cassie

Patuxent Bird Identification InfoCenter

Bird Watcher's Digest

Howard County Bird Club



Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus): Female colored similarly but without the black Fu Manchu moustache. Flight feather shafts are yellow. Western race has red shafted flight feathers. Photo by June Tveekrem

Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens): Similar to the Downy Woodpecker (See this page) but much larger with a longer beak. Male photo by June Tveekrem. Female photo by Anita Mueller.


Red Bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus): Grows to 9 inches. As seen here, the male has much more red on his head. Photo by Anita Mueller.

Carolina Wren(Thryothorus ludovicianus): Rufous upper parts, lighter orange below, white stripe above eye. Common throughout the region. Photo by June Tveekrem



Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius): 8 inches. Drills rows of holes and laps the sap and insects it attracts from them. Location: Quehanna Tr, PA. Photo by Pat Roberts.

Brown Creeper (Certhia americana): White belly, brown with buff stripes above. Found mostly in the mountains of the region. Photo by June Tveekrem


 Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens): Similar in coloration to the Hairy Woodpecker but much smaller (6.5 inches VS.9 inches) and with a much smaller beak. Female shown in top photo. Male (bottom photo) has a red spot on the back of his head. Photo by Anita Mueller.


Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus): A northern bird known to migrate into our region in search of food in the winter. It feeds almost exclusively on insects found in burned trees. Males have a distinctive yellow cap on its forehead. Females similarly colored but lacking the yellow cap. Photo by Anita Mueller. 


White-Breasted Nuthatch - male (Sitta corolinensis): 6 inches. Feeds by hopping along tree trunks and branches often hanging upside down . This one is nesting in a cavity in a Beech Tree. Prefers lowland areas, deciduous forests. Location: Jug Bay/Patuxent River Park, MD. Photo by Sue Muller.

Red-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta canadensis): Much smaller than its white breasted cousin above. Prefers the evergreens of mountain regions. Photo by June Tveekrem



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