Male Red-bellied Woodpecker with its Adorable Young One

Photo by @write2mad

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Male Red-bellied Woodpecker with its adorable young one beautifully captured in Murrysville, Pennsylvania by @write2mad

Juvenile Red-bellied Woodpeckers look similar to adults, but they are duller overall. Young birds have a less distinctive pattern on the back, and their crowns are dusky without red on the nape or nasal tufts, although males and some females can show red-tipped feathers in the crown.


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  1. I’m sitting on my porch and I have also been watching a male red bellied woodpecker feeding its juvenile, I have also spotted its female mother here in Wallace, N.C.

    • Hi Sharon. That’s fabulous! We love watching the Red-bellied Woodpeckers feed their young and teach them to use our suet feeders. They’re one of our favorite backyard birds to have.

  2. I just spotted what I’m pretty sure is a juvenile male red bellied woodpecker on my suet feeder. Plain grey head. Also plain grey belly- I haven’t seen any photos of the belly of the juvenile. Is it indeed plain like the head? When I went back with my camera he was gone but the adult male red bellied woodpecker was there, so that was a big clue to possible/probable identity.

  3. I’m in Nova, OH and I too, have been watching a male red bellied woodpecker feeding his youngster.
    The adult will go to my feeder, fly up to his young that waits on the phone pole, and feed him/her.
    This continues for several times and they fly off, returning a little while later to repeat the process.
    I love watching them.

    • Hi June. We love seeing the Red-bellied Woodpeckers feeding their family at our suet feeders. Once the youngsters get comfortable, they’ll continue visiting our feeders. Red-bellied Woodpeckers have such endearing expressions. They always look like they’re smiling!

  4. We have at least two pairs of redbellies on our feeders, but the starlings will clean out our suet feeder in an hour if we don’t watch it closely. How do you keep the starlings off your suet feeders? Thinking about buying an electric fence box that I can control and hooking to my feeders. I hate starlings! Plus they’re an invasive species.

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