Living Bird Magazine
Gila WoodpeckerMelanerpes uropygialis
- ORDER: Piciformes
- FAMILY: Picidae
A conspicuous resident in the deserts of the Southwest and Mexico, the Gila Woodpecker is a characteristic bird of the saguaro cactus forests.More ID Info
- Carpintero del Desierto (Spanish)
- Pic des saguaros (French)
- Cool Facts
- When a pair of Gila Woodpeckers excavates a nest hole in a saguaro cactus, it typically does not use it for several months. Drying time is required for the inner pulp of the cactus to form a solid casing around the cavity.
- The male Gila Woodpecker forages mainly on the trunk and main branches of saguaro cacti, while the female concentrates on the periphery and diseased areas.
- Then oldest recorded Gila Woodpecker was a male in Arizona, who was at least 7 years, 9 months old.