Red-headed Woodpecker Recovery Project

Red-headed Woodpecker -Baird

Red-headed Woodpecker -Baird

The RHWO is a native of the Eastern US, most typically seen in open woodlands and savannas. It can be found in river bottoms, groves of dead and dying trees, orchards, urban parks, open agricultural country, savanna-like grasslands with scattered trees, forest edges, and along roadsides. It avoids forests with closed canopies. It is a cavity nester, and chooses dead trees to carve out its nest.

This bird catches its prey on the wing or by foraging in dead trees or on the ground. It eats insects and other invertebrates, berries and nuts, as well as the young and eggs of other birds. It requires open areas both for fly catching and ground foraging. It stores nuts and grasshoppers by wedging them in bark crevices, fence post cracks, and other crannies.

Over roughly the past 40 years the numbers of RHWO have declined by up to 90%. The most important reason is loss of habitat. During the past several decades many of our wooded areas have become overgrown and closed, due largely to a lack of active management. The RHWO requires an open woodland or savanna area so it can effectively forage for food. The RHWO nests in dead trees or limbs, and for greatest success, those nests should be 30 feet or more above the ground. When the numbers of large, dead trees are reduced, so are the numbers of nesting sites.

For more information, contact info@nulljdcf.org

Upcoming Events

Critters of the Night

October 20 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Join JDCF on Saturday, October 2oth at 10:00 AM to learn about some of our nocturnal friends, owls and bats. This program, geared towards a middle school grade level, introduces the life cycle of the owl and its food and habitat. It also identifies the characteristics that make the owl a perfect predator and member […] Read More

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Keynote Address: Kay Rhoads, Principal Chief of the Sac & Fox Nation

November 2 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

To kick off JDCF’s Voices from the Past: An Archaeological & Cultural Symposium, Kay Rhoads, Principal Chief of the Sac and Fox Nation, will give a keynote speech on Friday evening at 7:00 PM at the Hanover Township Park District Building, 500 Fillmore Street, Hanover, IL.  There is a $10.00/person entrance fee for non-JDCF members.

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Voices from the Past: An Archaeological & Cultural Symposium

November 3 @ 8:30 am - 4:30 pm

JDCF’s Wapello Reserve has many stories to tell about the native people who once inhabited the Mississippi River Driftless area. Exploration of Wapello’s broad terraces show that Paleo, Archaic, Woodland, Mississippian, and Euro-American peoples used the land along the Apple River over many millennia. These occupations left a rich record of artifacts, hearths, storage pits, […] Read More

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Potluck & Program – Citizen Science, Modern Technology & the Conservation of Nature

November 13 @ 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Charlie Blake, PhD biologist, will present on Citizen Science, Modern Technology and the Conservation of Nature. Charlie directs RiverWatch, an Illinois statewide citizen science program which monitors stream health. She will be giving an overview of popular phone apps including eBird and iNaturalist and web sites like FieldScope, which allow for far more accurate gathering […] Read More

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