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. Hawks

    May 25, 17 03:35 PM

    Flies into my backyard and terrifies all the black birds and song birds. Its large, haw-like, silver gray with light tan breast and hawk or Kite like bill.

    Read More

  2. mystery bird

    May 24, 17 06:51 PM

    she or he was small like a pheobe black feathers on the back and a white belly but the head had spiky feathers im unsure what kind it was it flies fast

    Read More

  3. 2017 update on Rose Breasted Grosbeaks on our place

    May 22, 17 01:56 PM

    It has been a couple of years since 'we' reported on the Rose Breasted Grosbeaks at our feeders. Mostly due to having to pull in our bird feeders in April

    Read More