Red-Bellied Woodpecker

The name Red-Bellied Woodpecker is misleading, for the red patch on its belly is rather faint. It occasionally feeds in southern orange groves, but makes up for this by eating quantities of destructive insects.


Roland Jordahl
Red-Bellied Woodpecker
Burline Pullin
Red-Bellied Woodpeckers, female (L) and male (R)
Red-Bellied Woodpecker, juvenile
Red-Bellied Woodpecker
Burline Pullin
Red-Bellied Woodpecker


Red-Bellied WoodpeckerBurline Pullin
Burline Pullin Red-Bellied Woodpecker

Scientific Name: Melanerpes carolinus.
Family: Woodpecker.
Length: 9-1/4 inches.
Wingspan: 16 inches.
Distinctive Markings: Zebra-striped back, red nape and a reddish tinge on belly. The male also has a red crown.
Nest: Pair excavates nesting cavity in an old stump or tree; then the female lays  three to eight white eggs.
Voice: Loud, harsh “quirr” sound.
Habitat: Wooded areas, residential areas with trees and shrubs.
Diet: insects, acorns and berries.
Backyard Favorites: Birdseed and suet; may also drink sugar water.

Bird Song & Range Map

Listen to the Red-Bellied Woodpecker’s song and learn where to spot them!

Bird songs provided by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

Red-bellied Woodpecker Bird SpeciesRange maps provided by Kaufman Field Guides, the official field guide of Birds & Blooms.

Jill Staake
Jill lives in Tampa, Florida, and writes about gardening, butterflies, outdoor projects and birding. When she's not gardening, you'll find her reading, traveling and happily digging her toes into the sand on the beach.