Red Head Bird Identification

Red Head Bird Identification
Some species of birds in North America have heads covered with red feathers. This feature is one of the keys used to identify the birds. The shape of the head, other markings, and sometimes the bird's behavior also aid in correctly recognizing these birds.

Northern cardinal

The northern cardinal is red all over except for a black mask-like coloring on its face and chin. The cardinal has a crested head and will hop rather than walk when on the ground.

Common redpoll

The common redpoll is a finch of the northern states and Canada that has a reddish "cap" from its beak back to the top of its head. The chin is black, the upper body is gray and brown, and the breast is pink. Redpolls often are seen passing seeds to one another.

Summer tanager

The summer tanager, a native of southern states from Texas eastward, is the only all-red bird in North America. It frequently catches bees and wasps and removes the stinger before eating them.

Scarlet tanager

The scarlet tanager has a brilliant red head. The rest of its body is also red except for its dark black wings and tail--no other bird has this color combination in the states.

Red-headed woodpecker

The red-headed woodpecker is identified by its all red head, black and white wings, black tail and white underbelly. It will catch grasshoppers and push them into the bark of trees to eat later.

Red-breasted sapsucker

The red-breasted sapsucker is similar to the red-headed woodpecker except it has wings interspersed with black and white. The red extends down to its upper chest.

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