Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2013-89

Common name:

Red-breasted Sapsucker

Scientific name: Sphyrapicus ruber
Date: 10-04-2013
Time: morning
Length of time observed: 3 min
Number: 1
Age: juv
Sex: male ?
Location: Orchard at Lytle Ranch
County: Washington
Latilong: 19
Elevation: ~850 m
Distance to bird: 4-5 m
Optical equipment: 10 x 42 binoculars
Weather: overcast
Light Conditions: overcast
Description:        Size of bird:  
(Description:)       Basic Shape:  
(Description:)  Overall Pattern:  
(Description:)            Bill Type:  
Field Marks and
Identifying Characteristics:
I observed a juvenile (hatch-year) Red-breasted Sapsucker eating persimmons in the orchard at Lytle Ranch. The sapsucker appeared to be molting into adult plumage on the upper breast.

Sapsucker with long stout bill, red head, white loral stripe, dark back, prominent white wing patch, and yellow belly.

Head deep red with white stripe extending from top of bill downward to below front of eye and faintly visible below and behind eye. Red extending down throat onto chest. Yellow belly with black streaking/ vermiculations on sides, white with dusky markings on undertail coverts. Wings black with prominent white patch and white spots on primaries. Black back with white spots arranged in two parallel vertical lines. Tail black with white barred central retrices.
(see photos)
Song or call & method of delivery: none heard
Behavior: eating persimmons in orchard
Habitat: orchard adjacent to desert riparian area
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Distinguished from Red-naped, Yellow-bellied, and hybrid sapsuckers by solid red head, limited facial pattern, sparse back pattern, and lack of black crescent on breast and black feathering on nape.
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
References consulted:  
Description from: Notes made later
Observer: Rick Fridell
Observer's address: Hurricane, UT
Observer's e-mail address: **
Other observers who independently identified this bird:  
Date prepared: 12-05-2013
Additional material: Photos
Additional_Comments: description above copied from field notes