Red Bellied Woodpecker Nesting

by Sue
(near Kentucky Lake)

Aug. 2013... We have had these beautiful Red Bellied Woodpeckers at our feeders for a number of years along with the occasional yearly visit of Downey, Hairy and Red-Headed Woodpeckers. Located in Western Kentucky near Kentucky Lake & Dam, we keep a mixed songbird food with lots of Black Oil Sunflower seeds in our feeders. This year we added a feeder with Peanut Suet Nuggets for a nesting Bluebird family. Of course the woodpeckers loved it, too!


This year is the first year I have identified a female Red Bellied. Knowing we must have a pair, was exciting. We have half of our property in woods so plenty of opportunities for them. Today I saw something remarkable. The male was at the feeder and then jumped to the ground. Then he flew up and landed on the utility pole in our yard holding something in his beak. I couldn't figure out what he was doing, but saw him continue to hop around the pole all the way to the top. To my surprise when he reached the top, the head of the female poked out from the support at the top and took the contents from the male's beak! Looks like they are nesting to me.

Up until today, I was only aware that the woodpeckers nested in tree cavities until reading the information on this site. Having witnessed this today, I can say they do nest on/in utility poles. Being concerned for their safety, I hope to add a proper nesting box for them for next year! I'll also be watching the top of the pole with binoculars to see if this nest is successful.

Click here to post comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Red Bellied Woodpecker.



Coming Soon

Recent Articles

  1. white bird

    Jan 18, 17 03:08 PM

    long thin legs white heavy looking

    Read More

  2. New Jersey Backyard

    Jan 11, 17 10:20 AM

    Woke up yesterday morning to find a group of about a dozen of these large-breasted birds with proportionately small heads and a long tail. Suburban Southern

    Read More

  3. L Spence

    Dec 31, 16 08:25 PM

    I live near Albany, New York and I was wondering why these past 2 years we haven't seen any cardinals. Is it because the winters have been to mild. The

    Read More