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Golden-fronted Woodpecker

Order: Piciformes
Family: Picidae
Genus: Melanerpes
Species: aurifrons

Gr. pikos  woodpecker
La. picus  woodpecker
Gr. Circe, mythological
     daughter of Helios,
     changed Picus, son of
     Saturn, into a woodpecker
La. forma  form, shape, kind
Gr. melas  black
Gr. herpes  a creeper
La. aurum  gold
La. frons  forehead, brow

Golden-fronted Woodpecker, Baird 1859
Spencer Fullerton Baird
Nine or ten inches long. Red crown and nape, black and white barred back, wings and tail feathers. White head and underside. Black beak.

USGS Golden-fronted Woodpecker Map

Abundant in mesquite shrublands or mixed forests in arid Texas, southwest Oklahoma and further south in Mexico, Honduras and northern Nicaragua.

Builds nests in cavities it excavates or reuses an abandoned cavity in decaying trees, telephone poles, or fence posts from within reach to twenty feet or higher.

Lays four to seven, usually five or six white eggs which hatch after about two weeks incubation and young leave the nest in about another four weeks.

Eats beetles, ants, and grasshoppers, corn, acorns, berries and other wild fruit.

The Golden-fronted Woodpecker nest box (same as for the Red-headed Woodpecker and Hawk Owl) has a 6" by 6" floor, 14" inside ceiling, 2" diameter entrance hole located 11" above the floor and ventilation openings. Hinged roof is secured with shutter hooks.


Chester A Reed

Chester A. Reed

Mount nest box on a tree trunk or post between ten and twenty feet high. Place wood chips in the nest box.


Handbook of Birds of the Western United States, Florence Merriam Bailey, 1914

Golden-fronted Woodpecker


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