A bird I have never seen before

by Ron Payne
(Burlington, Ont., Canada)

The nearest bird picture I have found that compares to what I saw, is the Red Breasted Sapsucker. This bird was seen on July 2/2010.

I first saw it two weeks prior, but not clearly. This bird was seen around the third hole of a golf course called The Greens At Renton, just east of the city of Simcoe, Ontario, Canada.

It's head was a vibrant red, the body feathers were black with a white band near the rear of the body. The feathers were black with a white band in them. All of the colors were vibrant. I could not see the breast coloring. The bird seemed quite unique.

In flight, the black feathers with white banding made this bird stand out from most others. As it flew the white feathers seemed more prominent than when the bird was walking on the fairway.

When it was on the ground the total stark red head was the most noticeble feature. The bird's size was around that of a Cardinal or maybe even a Robin.

I have been living in the province of Ontario all of my Life, some Sixty years plus, and have been all over this province, and have never seen a bird like this before.

It sure would be nice to know what it is.


Thank you Ron, for such a detailed description of this Mystery Bird. I hope one or more of our readers can identify it for you - I would love to know what it was!

I wonder if it could be a Red-bellied Woodpecker as the Red Breasted Sapsucker is found on Canada's west coast, and not in Ontario, but the Red Headed is found in this area.

You can also check this site for every Woodpecker found in Canada - check Whatbird Website.

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Red Belly
by: Anonymous

I live close to that area and I have seen a lot of Red Bellied Woodpeckers. Haven't seen any Red Headed or Pileated in the area yet, although I have seen signs of the Pileated in the forest areas around here. The only thing is the Red Bellies don't spend too much time on the ground.

Three suggestions
by: Alexis

My first guess would be a Red-headed Woodpecker. The head and neck are a bright red and the breast is white. The wings and back are black with white on the lower wings and black at the bottom of the wings. Two other suggestions would be a Pileated Woodpecker or a Red-bellied Woodpecker.

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