What I saw Monday:

Red Bellied Woodpecker

Ladder-backed Woodpecker

See the difference in their heads?


7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. sammi
    Jan 12, 2010 @ 18:42:52

    Okay, I have to admit it “only” took me about 5 minutes of playing “find the difference” to see it. But why is the top one called a Red Bellied Woodpecker? Is there really some red that we just can’t see?

    But thanks for the birdie lesson. I learn a lot from all of you on the right coast during the winter. Ours usually stay hidden under the sage brush, so it’s hard to tell what is still here and what may be new!


    • Gayle
      Jan 12, 2010 @ 19:27:20

      Sam, I have no idea why it is called that. It is just what the bird book says. And after reading the book again, I think the one I said was a Ladderback may not really be. Guess I need Judy or Vicki or someone else to tell me.


      • Vicki W
        Jan 12, 2010 @ 21:58:35

        I think they are both red-bellied woodpeckers. It may be the difference between sexes. I think the ladderback lives further south but I’m too warm and cozy to get up and look it up!

  2. Danielle
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 13:52:34

    Hi, I just found your blog through MQResource, and I love it. I really love your birds. How neat!


  3. Anonymous
    Apr 24, 2012 @ 17:35:46

    Both of those photos are probably red-bellied woodpeckers. You are right that the crown of their heads are different! The top one is a male, the bottom a female. The red head of ladder-backed woodpecker does not go all the way down to the stripes on the back–the nape of a ladder-back’s neck is black.

    The ladder-backed:



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