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Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker

Sphyrapicus varius

Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker is not just an insult offered by Yosemite Sam; it is a woodpecker. These birds are rarely seen in the western USA. They breed in the northeastern USA and across Canada and spend winters in southeastern USA, Mexico and Central America.

Sapsuckers drill holes in trees that cause the sap to flow to the surface into the drilled holes where these birds drink the sweet sap and eat any insects that get trapped. The drumming that all sapsuckers do to announce their territorial claims sounds very similar. I think it is reminiscent of the drum riff known as “Shave And A Haircut”.

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