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Red-Naped Sapsucker

Sphyrapicus nuchalis

The Red-Naped Sapsucker is closely related to the Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker and the Red-Breasted Sapsucker. When ornithologist Spencer F. Baird first described this bird in 1858, it was assumed it was a subspecies of the Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker. It wasn’t until 1998 that the AOU recognised it as belonging to its own species.

These birds breed in mixed forests in the Rocky Mountains and Great Basin regions of North America. They usually escavate a fresh cavity in a standing dead tree each year, which is used by other birds in subsequent years.

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