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Michelle H.

Ballwin, MO, USA


After much searching, I believe this is just a downy woodpecker whose head and breast feathers have been “dyed” by tannins/tree sap. I thought it was a sapsucker at first, but all the markings suggest a downy, so the buffy colored threw me for a loop!

All the white feathers on the head and upper breast and neck are a buffy orange-red, much like the coloring on a female rose-breasted grosbeak.

This link has been the only mention and picture of a buff colored woodpecker I’ve been able to find:

Buff-Headed Downy Woodpecker

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