Northern Flicker

Species Profile: Northern Flicker

Northern Flicker, Colaptes auratus

Learn more about this species in the Peterson Reference Guide to Woodpeckers of North America.

Introduction to the species

“Many odd incidents have been related of the Flicker, its courtship and its nesting, that one might be disposed to attribute to it a sense of humor, or even to dub it a clown among the birds.”
-A.F. Ganier 1926

From its intricate plumage to its engaging behavior, the Northern Flicker has fascinated humans for centuries. Native Americans adorned their baskets and ceremonial garb with its bright wing and tail feathers; it is the only woodpecker to boast “state bird” status (in Alabama); and more than 150 folk names have been assigned to this ubiquitous ant-eater.


Gallery of photos of the Northern Flicker by Steve Shunk


Return to List of Species of North American Woodpeckers page.

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