Red What?

The red head of the Red-bellied Woodpecker is a bold flag in winter. But it’s not the “Red-headed Woodpecker” because that name goes to another species, which has an entirely red head as an adult, not just this mohawk-like swath of color. This is a male, the color going from the nape to the bill. The female of Melanerpes carolinus doesn’t have red on the very top of the head. The nominal belly is rather more subtle. Here’s a glimpse.

By the way, that’s a sweetgum tree, a good place to look for birds in winter. Those death-star seed pods are loaded with small seeds.

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