Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub
    Author(s): Richard N. Conner; Stanley D. Jones; Gretchen D. Jones
    Date: 1994
    Source: Wilson Bull., 106(2), 1994, pp. 242-257
    Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
    PDF: Download Publication  (365 KB)


    We studied woodpecker foraging behavior, snag quality, and surrounding habitat in a bottomland hardwood forest in the Stephen F. Austin Experimental Forest from December 1984 through November 1986. The amount and location of woodpecker foraging excavations indicated that woodpeckers excavated mainly at the well-decayed tops and bases of snags. Woodpeckers preferred to forage on oaks (Quercus spp.) (snags and live trees) whereas blue beech (Curpinus caroliniana) and red maple (Acer rubrum) were used less than expected. Snags used for foraging excavations were generally 3-10m in height, mainly located in older stands, and lacked bark at excavated foraging sites. In the bottomland habitat, Downy Woodpeckers (Picoides pubescens) foraged on smaller diameter substrates and used more tree species than other woodpecker species. Pileated Woodpeckers (Dryocopus pileatus) foraged either near the ground or in the upper zones of trees. Red-bellied Woodpeckers (Melonerpes cnrolinus) used a restricted range of tree diameters and locations in trees. Red-headed Woodpeckers (M. erythrocephalus) used the greatest diversity of foraging methods and foraged on the largest range of tree diameters.

    Publication Notes

    • You may send email to to request a hard copy of this publication.
    • (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Conner, Richard N.; Jones, Stanley D.; Jones, Gretchen D. 1994. Snag Condition and Woodpecker Foraging Ecology in a Bottomland Hardwood Forest. Wilson Bull., 106(2), 1994, pp. 242-257

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page