Golden woodpecker and features of his life

The Golden Woodpecker or the Shiloklyuviy Golden Woodpecker lives in Canada, the USA, Greenland, Alaska, in the south of Nicaragua and Cuba. We will talk about the living conditions and behavior of these birds in this article.

Golden woodpeckers are found in a wide variety of habitats, where there are dead trees with voids. They live in tropical, oak, pine, mixed and evergreen forests. In addition, golden woodpeckers are found in city parks, gardens, lawns and farmland. Often they settle next to people. These birds are found at an altitude of 1600-3500 meters.

Golden Woodpecker Description

The size of the golden woodpecker is slightly larger compared to the gray woodpecker. The body length is 30-35 centimeters, and the wingspan varies from 42 to 50 centimeters. Weight reaches 170 grams.

The head is large, the neck is long, muscular. On paws there are sharp and crooked claws. The tail is 12 centimeters long and serves as a balancer, so it is tough. The beak is long (more than 4 centimeters), strong and sharp. The tongue is very long and sticky.

The color of the back of the body and wings is brown. The goiter is decorated with a black crescent; in females this crescent is smaller than in males. The back of the body is ash gray. Belly and chest are beige with black dots. The tail is dark and its tip is black. The box is white. On the upper feathers of the tail there are black wide stripes. The top of the beak is brown, and the bottom is bluish. Paws are blue-gray. The eyes are light brown.

There are 2 color forms of red (western) and yellow (eastern). In the yellow form, the lower part of the wings and tail is yellow. On the back of the head, both sexes have a crescent of bright red color. The nape and cap on the head are gray. The throat and chin are brown. Males have a "mustache" - a narrow strip extending from the base of the beak, females do not have a "mustache".

Accordingly, in the red form, the lower part of the wings and tail is red-orange. The throat and front of the head are gray. The crescent at the back of the head is light pink; the cap on the head is light brown. The back of the body is lighter in comparison with representatives of the yellow form. Both sexes have a "mustache", but in females they are pale brown, and in males they are red.

Males are brighter than females. After the autumn molt, the golden woodpeckers become very bright and beautiful, and in the spring the coloring becomes more dull.

Golden Shiloklyuvy woodpecker (Colaptes auratus).

The color of young individuals is dirty. On the back of the head, the spot is narrower, light brown in color. Young individuals of both sexes have a black "mustache". The spots on the stomach are larger than in adult woodpeckers. The beak is weak and soft. In young yellow woodpeckers, the lower part of the wings can be from pale yellow to almost green.

Shiloklyuvuyu golden woodpeckers lifestyle

Golden woodpeckers lead a daily life; they seek food both on earth and on trees. In the southern part of the range, golden woodpeckers are sedentary, and in the northern part of the range, birds are migratory. They make flights at night.

Young individuals molt for the first time in July, and molt ends in September or October. At the same time, molting occurs in adult birds.

There are more than 100 names for the golden shiloklyuvy woodpecker, including "yellow hammer", "Harry Wicket", "o-ho-ho", "weekend up", "walk-up", "weekend" There are more than 100 names for the golden shiloklyuvy woodpecker, including "yellow hammer", "Harry Wicket", "o-ho-ho", "weekend-up", "walk-up", "weekend".

An hour before sunset, woodpeckers hide in a hollow and leave it in the morning when the sun rises. They wait for rainy weather in the nests. Golden woodpeckers fly quickly and impetuously. Making a flight from tree to tree, the golden woodpecker moves in a straight line, and in front of the desired tree falls several meters.

The woodpecker sits down, and then quickly climbs up. These birds can perfectly climb in any positions. Woodpeckers roam the earth with short flights.

Sometimes golden woodpeckers winter under the eaves of houses, in sheds or garages. As a rule, these are calm birds, but sometimes woodpeckers can behave aggressively, for example, they kill alien chicks that nest nearby, they can also kill wounded birds or attack weakened predators (hawks and falcons). These are territorial birds. When defending a territory or partner, golden woodpeckers become aggressive towards other birds.

In summer and spring, male woodpeckers sing songs that resemble resounding laughter. Their songs are loud, they are heard over long distances. When a woodpecker sits down or, on the contrary, takes off, he, as if bowing to invisible spectators, then jerks his head and makes a loud “clap”.

Parents feed chicks belch food. Chicks fully fledge to 25-28 days.

The natural enemies of woodpeckers are rat snakes and raccoons. Raccoons take their paws eggs from the nests of woodpeckers and drink them, and snakes eat not only eggs, but also chicks. For adult woodpeckers, a variety of hawks and falcons are dangerous. Squirrels also damage nests. The life expectancy of golden woodpeckers in nature is 6–9 years.

Golden woodpecker food

Golden woodpeckers are omnivores. Most of the diet (about 61%) consists of invertebrates: crickets, termites, wasps, grasshoppers, ants, bugs, moths, aphids, caterpillars, spiders, beetles and insect larvae.

In addition, golden woodpeckers are happy to enjoy berries: wild strawberries, blueberries, cornel, cherries, blackberries, elderberries, cherries, hawthorn, eucalyptus, mountain ash. They also include grains, seeds, and fruits. About 39% of the diet falls on apples, peaches, pears, plums, magnolias, persimmons, grapes, acorns and beech nuts. Woodpeckers need to drink water twice a day. In winter, they eat snow.

The Golden Woodpecker leads a daily life. It feeds both on trees and on the ground.

Gold woodpeckers breeding

The breeding season for golden woodpeckers lasts from February to July. Several males fly at the same time behind the female, but they do not fight among themselves. Rejected males fly away to look for a new partner. The formed pair immediately begins to build a nest. Woodpeckers hollow out in dry trees and hollow stumps, and sometimes even make nests in the ground. If there are unoccupied old hollows, then use them. The male begins to build a nest, and the female finishes. The nest is located at a height of 2.5 to 7.5 meters, the depth of the nest is 24-45 centimeters.

The female lays eggs daily at 5-6 in the morning. In clutch there are from 3 to 12 eggs, but most often there are 6-8 of them. Eggs are oval, shiny, weighing about 7 grams. If the clutch dies, the female makes a new one. During the experiments, 48 ​​eggs were obtained from one female in 65 days. Incubation lasts 14-16 days.

Both parents are involved in the incubation of eggs. At night, the male warms the eggs, and in the daytime they sit in turn every 1.5 hours. Golden woodpeckers make 1-2 broods a year.

Out of the total number, no more than 3-4 chicks survive. Newborn chickens are blind, naked and completely defenseless. The skin of the babies is clear, so swallowed ants are visible in the throat. Chicks grow, and their skin becomes rougher and denser. The skin in the first 5-6 days of life has a bluish tint.

Listen to the voice of the golden woodpecker


Parents feed chicks burping food. Plumage in young animals appears in 25-28 days. Parents feed the chicks for 2–3 weeks. And then they become independent. Golden woodpeckers have puberty in the first year of life.

Eggs of golden shiloklyuvy woodpeckers were found in nests of sparrows, swallows, pigeons. If there are not enough nesting places, then golden woodpeckers compete with other species of woodpeckers, kestrels and starlings.

Golden woodpeckers and people

The meat of golden shiloklyuvy woodpeckers is highly appreciated, it is considered a delicacy, although it has an ant smell. They easily adapt in captivity and are accustomed to any food.

Golden woodpeckers are listed in the Red Book, but they are positioned as the species causing the least concern. People through their activities destroy the habitat of woodpeckers, so they can reduce their population.

Watch the video: The Hempsteadys - "Still Life with Woodpecker" Official Music Video (February 2020).

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