Alternate name: Yellow-shafted Flicker
Family: Picidae, Woodpeckers view all from this family
Description ADULT MALE Has golden brown back and upper wing coverts, both with black barring; rump is white and tail is black. Head is grayish overall with buffish forecrown; "Yellow-shafted" has extensive buff on face, black malar stripe, and red nape patch ("Red-shafted" has red malar stripe). Note striking black crescent on chest and dark-spotted whitish underparts. ADULT FEMALE Similar, but head lacks malar stripe; "Yellow-shafted" has red nape patch. JUVENILE Similar to respective sex adult.
Dimensions Length: 12" (30 cm)
Habitat "Yellow-shafted" is common in all kinds of wooded habitats; mainly resident but northern populations are migratory. "Red-shafted" is widespread in west.
Observation Tips Easy to see.
Range Northwest, Western Canada, New England, California, Great Lakes, Rocky Mountains, Texas, Eastern Canada, Plains, Florida, Alaska, Southeast, Southwest, Mid-Atlantic
Voice Utters a rapid, raptorlike kew-kew-kewÖ.
Discussion Familiar and well-marked medium-sized woodpecker. Variation exists in wing color and two forms are recognized and separated geographically, although hybrid intermediates occur in zone of overlap. "Yellow-shafted" Flicker (the one seen in range covered by this book) has yellow flight feather shafts and flush of same color on underwing coverts. In "Red-shafted," these elements of plumage are reddish pink. Excavates nest holes in trees and feeds on wood-boring insects and ants, sometimes on ground. Sexes are dissimilar.