Some Observations on the Feeding Habits of the Red-headed Woodpecker

Published in 1975

It 1s a well-documented fact that Red-headed Woodpeckers will hawk for insects in a flycatcher-like fashion. For several years I have regularly observed them doing this a t the Birmingham Zoo, which is where I work. In the late summer when insects hatch out in the zoo ponds, the Red-heads will congregate in several weeping willow trees and begin to forage in the typical manner; I have often seen eight or ten birds so engaged at one time. Another favorite pastime for these birds is to steal peanuts from the elephants. One or two birds will sit on a power pole near the elephants’ lot, and, when a peanut is thrown to the elephants, a bird will swoop down , grab the nut and fly back to the top of the pole. The birds usually open the nut and eat it immediately; occasionally they carry it away.

Author: James V. Peavy, Jr.
Volume Number: 23 Year Published: 1975
Issue Number: 1-2
Page Number: 8

Link to article: 23 No. 1, 2 1975_p8.pdf
Link to the full issue of BirdLife: 23 No. 1, 2 1975.pdf