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Woodpecker

   

Woodpeckers are small to medium sized birds with chisel like beaks, short legs, stiff tails and long tongues used for capturing insects. Some species have feet with two toes pointing forward, and two backward, while several species have only three toes. Many woodpeckers have the habit of tapping noisily on tree trunks with their beaks. There are 218 species worldwide and 5 species which occur in Namibia.

Bennett's Woodpecker Campethera bennettii

The Bennett's Woodpecker (Campethera bennettii) is a species of bird in the Picidae family. It is found in Angola, Botswana, Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Golden-tailed Woodpecker Campethera abingoni

The Golden-tailed Woodpecker (Campethera abingoni) is a species of bird in the Picidae family. It is found in Angola, Benin, Botswana, Canada, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ivory Coast, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Cardinal Woodpecker Dendropicos fuscescens


The Cardinal Woodpecker, Dendropicos fuscescens, is a widespread and common resident breeder in much of sub-Saharan Africa. It is a species found in a wide range of habitats from dense forest to thornbush. It nests in a tree hole, unlined apart from wood chippings.

Like other woodpeckers, this species has a straight pointed bill, a stiff tail to provide support against tree trunks, and zygodactyl or “yoked" feet, with two toes pointing forward, and two backward. The long tongue can be darted forward to capture insects.

This bird is 14-15 cm in length. It is a typical woodpecker shape, and has a dull olive back, marked with white spots. The underparts are white, heavily streaked with black, and the rump is tawny. The white throat and face are separated by a conspicuous black malar stripe, and the forecrown is brown. As with other woodpeckers, the head pattern varies with age and sex. The male has a red hind crown and nape, the female has a dark hindcrown and black nape, and juvenile males have a red hindcrown and black nape. The small crest is raised when the bird is excited.

The West African subspecies is distinctive. It has streaking on the face and chin, a yellow-buff ground colour to the underparts, and greener upperparts (except the juvenile), with weaker, yellower spotting.

Like other woodpeckers, this species is an insectivore. It is frequently seen, and regularly drums softly. The call is a high-pitched krrrek-krrrek-krrrek.

Bearded Woodpecker Dendropicos namaquus

The Bearded Woodpecker (Dendropicos namaquus) is a species of bird in the Picidae family. It is found in Angola, Botswana, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Olive Woodpecker Dendropicos griseocephalus


The Olive Woodpecker (Mesopicos griseocephalus) is a species of bird in the Picidae family. It is found in Angola, Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe

   
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