Backyard BirdsUncategorized

Chestnut / Elegant Woodpeckers

Member of the Picidae Family: WoodpeckersSapsuckersFlickers

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The Chestnut or Elegant Woodpeckers (Celeus elegans) are found in South America from Colombia, Venezuela and the Guianas south to Ecuador, Bolivia and northern Brazil, and on Trinidad. They inhabit forest and other closed woodland.


Nesting / Breeding:

They nest in the cavities of dead treees with the chamber floor being up to 30 cm below the entrance. The average clutch consists of 3 white eggs.



The Chestnut Woodpecker is a large woodpecker, measuring 28 cm in length and weighing about 127g.

The plumage is a mostly rich unbarred chestnut brown with a yellow rump and flanks and a yellowish crest. The wings and tail are black and the bill yellow-white. T

he male has a red malar (cheek) stripe, but otherwise males and females look alike. C. e. leotaudi of Trinidad is smaller, paler, and much brighter than the mainland forms.



The Chestnut Woodpecker mostly feed on insects (including termites) and some fruits. They will also accept table scraps and raid bird feeders.


Call / Song:

This noisy species emits harsh parrot-like squawk whEEjer calls.


Species Research by Sibylle Johnson


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Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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